Many a Scot seemed surprised by the opening of a new Scottish Parliament in 1999. Few seemed clear where it had come from. Was it a British trick or a Scottish triumph? This book decides by investigating the fact that Scotland manages to hold onto an identity apparently out of proportion to its size. Through the twentieth century, Scots often blamed their land's vivid imagery for making the nation seem a place of local color rather than a political space. But looking back from the moment beyond the Scottish Parliament, we can see that Scotland's signs have played a large role in maintaining an idea of Scotland that, by the end of the twentieth century, made a Parliament seem both possible and necessary. The essays gathered here, by leading cultural critics and historians of Scotland, show how, since the late eighteenth century, Scotland has been converted into lively signs capable of rewriting the nation today.
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