By Louisa Gairn
A provocative and well timed reconsideration of contemporary Scottish literature within the mild of ecological inspiration. Louisa Gairn demonstrates the contribution of successive generations of Scottish writers to the improvement of foreign ecological idea and philosophy. She revisits the works of Robert Louis Stevenson, John Muir, Nan Shepherd, John Burnside, Kathleen Jamie, and George Mackay Brown, between others, to bare the importance of ecological notion throughout Scottish literary tradition. by way of tracing the clinical, philosophical, and political impact of ecology on those writers, Gairn offers an unique realizing of Scottish literature from the mid-nineteenth century to the current. In an age of environmental hindrance, Ecology and glossy Scottish Literature issues to a background of ecological proposal that's of significant relevance to either Scottish literary tradition and the broader box of eco-friendly studies.
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Additional info for Ecology and Modern Scottish Literature
The reality for many more would have been a cycle of poverty and deprivation without any of the consolations of the clean air and water of a rural location. It was bitterly ironic, for commentators such as Blackie, that the gentleman mountaineer or grouse-shooter’s ‘love’ for the Scottish soil he visited on holiday was lauded as a virtue and praised as a duty fulfilled, whilst the crofting tenant’s ancestral sense of connection to the land was regarded as an unsustainable tradition which ought to be discouraged.
But I cannot help thinking that in this case the nature of the scenery has a great deal to do in predisposing the imagination to a melancholy case, and thus fitting the mind for receiving and retaining, if not originating the tragic or pathetic creation. This influence, too, might be wholly an unconscious one for many generations. It would thus affect the singer without his knowing it . G. 22 Both Veitch and Ramsay (the latter with a touch of bombast) seem convinced of the ‘naturalness’ of this perceived affinity with the Scottish hills, arguing that the capacity for nature appreciation or mountaineering is somehow embedded in the biology of individuals; a collective biological memory of the Scottish landscape transmissible to the individual psyche.
I, pp. 14–15. 12. , p. 68. 13. ), Selected Poetry (London: Penguin Books, 1992), pp. 76–80; p. 77. 14. Quoted in James McKusick, Green Writing: Romanticism and Ecology (London: MacMillan Press, 2000), p. 116. 15. Ralph Waldo Emerson, ‘Nature’, The Complete Works, vol. I (New York: The Riverside Press, 1903), p. 29; Veitch, Feeling for Nature in Scottish Poetry, p. 10. 16.
Ecology and Modern Scottish Literature by Louisa Gairn