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Courses in Scottish Studies

Fall 2015

History 237 - History of Scotland 1707 - Present 

This course will introduce students to modern Scottish history and its wider contexts. In addition to exploring events and experiences that took place within Scotland (or the ‘everyday’), this course will assess Scotland’s relationship to other countries in the United Kingdom (England, Wales, and Ireland), Europe, and the wider world, especially the British Empire, which afforded many Scots opportunities not available to them at home. In this period, rapid industrialization and urbanization led many Scots to leave for countries perceived to have available land and stable employment, notably Canada and the United States. Scotland also saw a major influx of poorer European, and East and South Asian immigrants seeking a better life in a wealthy industrial country, notably those from Ireland, Italy, the Baltic States, Eastern Europe (including Roma), China, India, and Pakistan, who have all contributed to Scottish culture in meaningful ways.

In this way, we will assess what Scotland can teach us about both emigrant and immigrant experiences in a global setting. The course will cover a number of core themes providing students with a solid grounding in modern Scottish history including: migration and population change; war, trade and empire; economic development; religion; economy and industry; life, society, identity, and myth.

History 415 - Victorian Britain

This discussion-based tutorial will explore the economic, social, political, and cultural threads present in Scottish History during the Victorian period, and beyond. This period saw Great Britain emerge as a leading global industrial and imperial power. Scotland, however, transformed from an underdeveloped rural backwater into an industrial powerhouse more rapidly than the rest of Great Britain and as a result urban centres such as Glasgow—“the second city of Empire,”—experienced some of the worst effects of rapid urbanisation that accompanied the rise of industry from the creation of slums, crime, prostitution, and ill-health. Meanwhile, wealth flooded the cities for select groups of people made rich through industry and participation in the British Empire. Scotland also de-industrialised faster, which led to particularly Scottish advancements in social, political, and labour movements in the twentieth century, which had their origins in the nineteenth century. In particular, was Scottish criticism of the country’s constitutional relationship to England, which has had a lasting impact.

 By examining the Victorian Scottish experience in its broader historical and temporal contexts, students of History 415 will be able to test and challenge commonly held assumptions about the history of the period. Students will examine the historical debates concerning the social and cultural consequences of rapid social, political, and economic shifts present in the Victorian period and the particular responses of Scottish people.

Spring 2016

History 237 - History of Scotland 1707 - Present 

This course will introduce students to modern Scottish history and its wider contexts. In addition to exploring events and experiences that took place within Scotland (or the ‘everyday’), this course will assess Scotland’s relationship to other countries in the United Kingdom (England, Wales, and Ireland), Europe, and the wider world, especially the British Empire, which afforded many Scots opportunities not available to them at home. In this period, rapid industrialization and urbanization led many Scots to leave for countries perceived to have available land and stable employment, notably Canada and the United States. Scotland also saw a major influx of poorer European, and East and South Asian immigrants seeking a better life in a wealthy industrial country, notably those from Ireland, Italy, the Baltic States, Eastern Europe (including Roma), China, India, and Pakistan, who have all contributed to Scottish culture in meaningful ways.

In this way, we will assess what Scotland can teach us about both emigrant and immigrant experiences in a global setting. The course will cover a number of core themes providing students with a solid grounding in modern Scottish history including: migration and population change; war, trade and empire; economic development; religion; economy and industry; life, society, identity, and myth.

History 486 - Scots in North America

This course is an investigation of the history of Scottish migration to North America. From the 17th to the 20th centuries North America was the most popular destination for both temporary and permanent Scottish migrants. In North America, we find Scots engaged in such activities as farming, the military, colonial administration, indentured servitude, slave trading, plantation ownership and management, and politics. After the American Revolution, Scottish emigrants to North America began settling almost exclusively in Canada and made a significant impact on the development of Canadian settler society. As such, students of this course will explore native/newcomer relationships, imperialism, slavery, settlement, colonial development, and North American identities. Students will also assess Scottish migration to North America in the broader context of global history including comparisons with Asia, Australasia, South and Central America as well as the Caribbean. By placing Scottish settlement within its broader contexts, students will test and debate themes present in the history of global migration.