New Book | Scotch Baronial: Architecture and National Identity

Posted in books by Editor on January 14, 2019

From Bloomsbury:

Miles Glendinning and Aonghus MacKechnie, Scotch Baronial: Architecture and National Identity in Scotland (London: Bloomsbury, 2019), 312 pages, ISBN: 978-1474283472, £65 / $88.

As the debate about Scottish independence rages on, this book takes a timely look at how Scotland’s politics have been expressed in its buildings, exploring how the architecture of Scotland—in particular the constantly-changing ideal of the ‘castle’—has been of great consequence to the ongoing narrative of Scottish national identity. Scotch Baronial provides a politically-framed examination of Scotland’s kaleidoscopic ‘castle architecture’, tracing how it was used to serve successive political agendas both prior to and during the three ‘unionist centuries’ from the early 17th century to the 20th century. The book encompasses many of the country’s most important historic buildings—from the palaces left behind by the ‘lost’ monarchy, to revivalist castles and the proud town halls of the Victorian age—examining their architectural styles and tracing their wildly fluctuating political and national connotations. It ends by bringing the story into the 21st century, exploring how contemporary ‘neo-modernist’ architecture in today’s Scotland, as exemplified in the Holyrood parliament, relates to concepts of national identity in architecture over the previous centuries.

Miles Glendinning is Professor of Architectural Conservation at the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of Edinburgh. Aonghus MacKechnie is an architectural historian and Head of Heritage Management at Historic Scotland. Together, they have co-authored numerous books including A History of Scottish Architecture (1996, co-authored with Ranald MacInnes) and Scottish Architecture (2004).


Introduction, Pre-1603 Scotland: Castellated Architecture and ‘Martial Independence’

Part I: Absent Monarchs and Civil Strife
1  1603–1660: Empty Royal Palaces and Castellated Court Architecture
2  1660–1689: From Restitution to Rejection of the Old Order
3  1689–1750: The Architecture of Dynastic Struggle

Part II: From ‘Romantic Scotland’ to ‘Imperial Scotland’
4  1750–1790: Enlightenment and Romanticism
5  1790–1820: Scotland and England in the Age of Revolutionary War
6  1820–1840: Scott, Abbotsford, and ‘Scotch’ Romanticism
7  1840–1870: Billings and Bryce: Mid-Century Baronial

8  1870–1900: Traditionalism
9   External Reflections: ‘National’ Scottish Architecture and the Empire

Part III: The Twentieth Century
10  1914 Onwards: Scottish Architectural Identity in the Age of Modernism

Conclusion, The Architecture of Unionist Nationalism and Its International Significance


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