- Introduction: The Study of Modern Scottish History
- Land and Sea: The Environment
- The Demographic Factor
- Mythical Scotland
- Religion and Society to <i>c</i>.1900
- The Literary Tradition
- The Clearances and the Transformation of the Scottish Countryside
- A Global Diaspora
- The Renaissance
- Reformed and Godly Scotland?
- The ‘Rise’ of the State?
- Reappraising the Early Modern Economy, 1500–1650
- Scotland restored and reshaped: Politics and Religion, <i>c</i>.1660–1712
- The Early Modern Family
- The Seventeenth-Century Irish Connection
- New Perspectives on Pre-union Scotland
- Migrant Destinations, 1500–1750
- Union Historiographies
- Scottish Jacobitism in its International Context
- The Rise (and fall?) of the Scottish Enlightenment
- The Barbarous North? Criminality in Early Modern Scotland
- Industrialization and the Scottish People
- Scotland and the Eighteenth-Century Empire
- The Challenge of Radicalism to 1832
- The Scottish Cities
- Identity within the Union State, 1800–1900
- The Scottish Diaspora since 1815
- The Impact of the Victorian Empire
- The Great War
- The Interwar Crisis: The Failure of Extremism
- The Religious Factor
- Gender and Nationhood in Modern Scottish Historiography
- The Stateless Nation and the British State since 1918
- Challenging the Union
- A New Scotland? The Economy
- A New Scotland? Society and Culture
Abstract and Keywords
The themes of tragedy and futility have come to dominate the popular memory of the Great War. In Scotland, its legacy is overlaid with a sense of inordinate sacrifice: a small nation, with a historic martial tradition, drawn into a global conflict of unprecedented destructive power. The emotional hold of this portrayal remains so powerful that the historian often struggles to confront the gap between memory and actual experience. It was economic and demographic patterns rooted in Scotland's historic engagement with the international economy prior to 1914 that maximized the national contribution to Britain's war effort. While the war may have strengthened the ‘diffuse Christianity’ of citizen soldiers, the situation for institutional religion on the home front was rather more complex. Distinctive issues of national identity mediated Scottish engagement with the conflict. It is perhaps in the area of commemoration and remembrance that the limitations of the traditional class-based template for understanding the Scottish Great War experience appear most exposed.
E. W. McFarland, Professor of History, School of Law and Social Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University
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