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|Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport eTheses
|Shinty, nationalism and cultural identity, 1835 - 1939: a critical analysis
|Reid, Irene A.
|University of Stirling
|The significance of sport is now emerging as an important dimension of the broader
scholarship that examines the social, cultural and political aspects of Scottish society. A prominent facet of this emerging body of literature has examined the multiple ways in which sport contributes to and is constitutive of Scottish nationalism and culture. This thesis builds upon previous studies of sport to examine the connections between shinty, nationalism and cultural identity. The rationale that underpins the thesis asserts
that in order to understand more fully expressions of nationalism, it is necessary to examine the social and cultural forces that have contributed to different ideas about the nation in specific historical circumstances. At the heart of the thesis it is argued that the sport-nationalism-identity axis in Scotland has sought to assert different forms of autonomy. The concept of autonomy, articulated through civil society, provides an original conceptual framework for the critical analysis of shinty, nationalism and
cultural identity between 1835 and 1939. The development of shinty during this
period coincided with the emergence of a number of cultural and political movements
that were par of a relatively autonomous Highland civil society, and which became
the repository of a paricular strand of Celtic radicalism. A number of the leading
proponents of Celtic radicalism were advocates of various aspects of Scottish
nationalism that oscilated on the political landscape of Britain after 1886. Using a
multi-methodological research approach, the thesis examines the extent to which the
development of shinty intersected with key elements of Celtic radicalism and
nationalism. It is concluded that shinty provided the terrain upon which paricular
cultural identities could be ariculated, and was also a vehicle for paricular
expressions of nationalism that reinforced different aspects of the autonomy of the
Highlands within Scotland. This original and unique synthesis provided in this thesis
makes a small contrbution to our understanding of sport in Scottish culture.
|Thesis or Dissertation
|School of Sport
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