Travels in Scottland: Poems for Walter Scott @250

Wyvern Poets, Bet McCallum, Roddie McKenzie, Rhoda Neville, George C. Robertson, Ann Prescott, Roy Canning, Anita Petrie, Moira Gee, Peter Marshall, Ian Newman, Gavin Cameron, Keith Williams

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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Abstract

Welcome to the fifth collection by Wyvern Poets, in collaboration with the University of Dundee. 2021 marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832), father of the historical novel and, effectively, of a new kind of mass ‘time travel’. Scott’s prolific output exported an image of his homeland with global appeal, if not always scrupulous authenticity. Stuart Kelly’s 2011 biography, Scott-land, is subtitled The Man Who Invented a Nation, perhaps without too much exaggeration. Scott’s antiquarian vision transformed a turbulent past into a pre-industrial landscape for the Romantic imagination, virtually overwhelming its place of origin or at least melding with it, as he rapidly became one the best-selling authors on earth. John Davidson’s ‘The Salvation of Nature’ (1891), fantasised a future Scotland bought out by an entertainment conglomerate. The World’s Pleasance Company, Ltd. demolishes anything built after 1700, ‘rewilding’ Scotland into a kind of neo-medieval theme park re-staging the past for tourists. Davidson’s story was both satirical exaggeration and backhanded tribute to Scott’s work for bringing history to life in a certain form. Hence this collection considers the many ways in which Scott’s evocative, but also problematic reimagining of his homeland remains relevant to our time and beyond.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationDundee
PublisherUniVerse
Number of pages24
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021
EventScott at 250: The Dundee Showcase - Online
Duration: 23 Sep 202123 Sep 2021

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