Scottish Nationalism and the Idea of Britain - HY42057

Quick Facts

  • Level 4
  • 30 Credits
  • Semester 2
  • 24 places
  • History - School of Humanities
  • Coursework 50% Examination 50%

Module Details

In recent decades the idea of Britain­ has been increasingly challenged by political events. The creation of the Scottish Parliament, the referendum on Scottish independence, Brexit and the crisis of immigration have all focused attention on what remains of the Britain our ancestors forged and, when called upon, were moved to defend with their lives. The module explores the persistence of common institutions and British identity markers conveyed into Scottish life by the armed forces, the monarchy, the BBC, the Union flag, the national anthem, and any number of cultural, social and economic activities. Through the lens of the Scottish nationalist movement, and Scottish nationalism more widely, this module explores how contemporaries formed and adapted their vision for Scotland’s future against the backdrop of an ever changing Britain. The module examines Scotland’s relationship to Britain by means of a close reading of the evidence from 1707 through to the present day.


Professor Graeme Morton


This module is assessed as follows:

Coursework 50% Examination 50%

  •  Class Presentation (15%)
  •  Essay 3,500 words (35%)
  •  Two hour examination (50%)


Sample Reading:

T.C. Smout (ed.) Anglo-Scottish Relations from 1603 to 1900 (Oxford, 2005).

W.L. Miller (ed.), Anglo-Scottish Relations from 1900 to Devolution and Beyond (Oxford, 2005).

D. McCrone and Frank Bechhofer, Understanding National Identity (London, 2015)

G. Morton, William Wallace: A National Tale (Edinburgh, 2015)

T.M. Devine and J. Wormald (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Modern Scottish History (Oxford, 2012)

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