School of History, Classics & Archaeology  
The University of Edinburgh School of History & Classics

School of History, Classics and Archaeology
Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies

Centre Events

 

Past Events

 

2009

 

Modern Scottish Historiography. A Debate.

 

Tuesday 27th January 2009,5.30 pm

Sydney Smith Room, Old Medical School

 

Allan I Macinnes, Professor of Early Modern History, Strathclyde, spoke on the question 'A golden age of Scottish Historiography: is it coming to an end?'

 

His presentation was followed by responses from a panel consisting of Prof Richard Oram, Stirling; Dr Enda Delaney, Edinburgh; Dr Catriona McDonald, Glasgow Caledonian; and Dr Gordon Pentland, Edinburgh and ended with a general discussion.

 

The event was chaired by Alvin Jackson, Richard Lodge Professor of Modern British History, Edinburgh

 


 

Did Scottish thinkers invent the modern world? A Debate.

 

Tuesday 24th February 2009, 6 pm

George Square Lecture Theatre

 

The Scottish Enlightenment of the eighteenth century is justly famed as a period of quite remarkable intellectual and cultural achievement. In recent years some have argued that the ideas of the thinkers of that time were also basic to the making of modern western democracy, the capitalist system and much else. The thesis was given a higher public profile in the best - selling volume by the American scholar, Arthur Herman, The Scottish Enlightenment: The Scots' Invention of the Modern World (2002). This has become a kind of source book for those Scottish politicians keen to demonstrate how the nation's past glories can act as a platform for the development of an even more prosperous future.

 

How convincing are these arguments which, after all, run to the very heart of Scotland 's identity, sense of itself and its impact on the world? Are they reliably based on the available evidence or do they rather reflect the exaggerated ethnic conceit of a small stateless nation? These and other questions were discussed by a distinguished panel of leading scholars in a public debate.

 

The participants were:

 

Dr Thomas Ahnert - Lecturer in Early Modern Intellectual History, University of Edinburgh

 

Dr David Allan - Reader in Scottish History, University of St Andrews

 

Professor Alexander Broadie - FRSE Chair of Logic and Rhetoric, University of Glasgow

 

Professor Tom Devine - FRSE FBA Sir William Fraser Chair of Scottish History and Palaeography and Director of the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, University of Edinburgh

 

Professor Susan Manning - FRSE Grierson Chair of Literature and Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, University of Edinburgh

 

Professor Christopher Smout - FRSE FBA Historiographer Royal in Scotland

 


 

'Peaceable Kingdom Lost: The Paxton Boys and the Destruction of William Penn's Holy Experiment’

 

Monday 6th July 2009, 5.15 pm

17 Buccleuch Place

 

A Seminar with Professor Kevin Kenny (Boston College)

Hosted in association with the American History Workshop, University of Edinburgh

 

 


 

"Scotland and Poland: a Historical Relationship, 1500 - 2009"

 

Thursday 1st and Friday 2nd October 2009

 

This international conference brought together the leading scholars of Scottish-Polish history. It addressed the current Polish migration to Scotland as well as the two nations' many past connections. The conference presented a major opportunity to discover Scotland and Poland's shared past and present.


The two-day conference was organised by the Polish Cultural Institute in London, in cooperation with the University of Edinburgh, Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, with the support of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Edinburgh.

 

 

'Brothers and Sisters for a' That': Rediscovering the Polish-Scottish Relationship

 

Thursday 1st October 2009, 6.20 pm

George Square Lecture Theatre


On October 1, Neal Ascherson, the distinguished Scottish journalist and commentator, delivered a public lecture entitled 'Brothers and Sisters for a' That': Rediscovering the Polish-Scottish Relationship. The lecture was chaired by Professor Tom Devine, Sir William Fraser Professor of Scottish History and Palaeography, Director of the Scottish Centre of Diaspora Studies, and Head of School of the University of Edinburgh's School of History, Classics and Archaeology.

 

[Listen to recording as MP3] - this may take a little time to load

 

Further Details

 

Polish Cultural Institute, London

Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, University of Edinburgh

Consulate General of the Republic of Poland, Edinburgh

     

 


 

Rethinking Diaspora: A Workshop

 

Wednesday 21st October 2009, 9.30 am - 12.45 pm

Dunfermline Room, National Museum of Scotland

 

The Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies and National Museums Scotland hosted a joint workshop at the National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, on 21 October 2009, to explore the material culture and heritage of the Scottish Diaspora. Presenters included Professor Tom Devine (UoE), David Forsyth (NMS), Alexander Hayward (NMS) and Chantal Knowles (NMS).


The full programme is available here.

 

 


 

Book Launch

Wednesday 28th October 2009, 5 pm

Seminar Room, 17 Buccleuch Place


Three postdoctoral fellows of the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies have recently published important monographs covering topics on the Scottish impact on India, colonial America and the nineteenth century Empire.


This event explored their findings and responses to them from three distinguished scholars from outside Edinburgh, while at the same time providing an insight into some of the Centre's current research activities.


Dr Esther Breitenbach, Empire and Scottish Society: The Impact of Foreign Missions at Home c.1790 to c.1914

(Edinburgh University Press, 2009)

Discussed by Professor Miles Taylor

Director of the Institute of Historical Research

 

Dr David Dobson, Scottish Trade with Colonial Charleston

(Humming Earth Press, 2009)

Discussed by Dr Alex Murdoch

Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, University of Edinburgh

 

Dr George McGilvary, East India Patronage and the British State

(Tauris Academic Studies, 2008)

Discussed by Professor Allan Macinnes

Professor of Early Modern History, University of Strathclyde


The event was chaired by T M Devine, Sir William Fraser Professor of Scottish History and Palaeography, Director of the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies and Head of the School of History, Classics and Archaeology in the University of Edinburgh.

 


 

Scotland and the British Empire Symposium


Wednesday 18th November 2009, 1.00 - 5.30pm

McEwan Hall Reception Room

 

This event was the first of two half-day symposia at the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, University of Edinburgh. Contributors to the Oxford History of the British Empire Companion volume on 'Scotland and the British Empire', to be edited by John MacKenzie and Tom Devine, presented papers based on their contributions to the volume.

 

The volume aims to reflect the major themes emerging from the growing body of work on the Scottish contribution to empire, and to situate this work in the mainstream of imperial history. It also aims to establish the place of the Scottish historiography of empire within a four nations perspective. The chapters in the volume will cover key themes such as economic benefits and impacts of empire; empire, culture and science at home and abroad; and empire and Scottish national identity.


Scotland and the British Empire Symposium programme

 


Forthcoming Events



Portrait of a Lady attributed to Thomas Hudson c.1740

Courtesy of University of Dundee Museum Services


Scotland's Historians: the Development of Eighteenth Century Historical Studies

 

Tuesday 8th December 2009, 6.00 - 8.00pm

St Cecilia's Hall, Cowgate, Edinburgh



The Eighteenth Century is the bridge between the old and the new Scotland - the era of the world famous Scottish Enlightenment, industrialisation and urbanisation and the revolutions in society in Lowland and Highland Scotland. In this event the five historians who have done most to interpret this remarkable era over the last four decades were asked to debate, reflect and provoke on the key issues which have challenged and stimulated them during their careers.


Chair, B P Lenman, Professor Emeritus of Modern History, University of St Andrews


T M Devine, Sir William Fraser Professor of Scottish History and Palaeography, University of Edinburgh, 'The Other Side of Enlightenment'


A I MacInnes, Professor of Early Modern History, University of Strathclyde, 'Securing the Union through Empire'


T C Smout , HM Historiographer in Scotland, 'The Improvers Ethic: the Impact of the Landed Classes on Rural Economy, Society and Environment'


C A Whatley , Professor of Scottish History, University of Dundee, 'John Galt and provincial Scotland: recantation, revision, and enlightenment'


This event was supported by the Economic and Social History Society of Scotland, the Royal Society of Edinburgh Research Awards in Arts & Humanities, the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies, University of Edinburgh and the Centre for Archive and Information Studies, University of Dundee.

           



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Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies
School of History, Classics and Archaeology
University of Edinburgh
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Tel: +44 (0) 131 651 1254
Fax: +44 (0) 131 650 4042
E-mail: scotdiaspora@ed.ac.uk
 

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