Iain Crichton Smith's perception
This thesis is a work of close reading, which examines the writing of Iain Crichton Smith (1928-1998), who wrote poetry, drama, novels and short stories in English and Gaelic. In the thesis, I consider all of his literary modes in both languages. Particularly in focus are certain themes that are shown to be of significance in Crichton Smith's writing, and I demonstrate how they relate to his other themes. The themes of language, communication, death, isolation, identity, change, intellectualism and reality are the most important of the themes. The thesis seeks to prove that they are all closely linked and that their true significance lies in the nature of their relationship to one another and to the concept of perception, which pervades all of Crichton Smith's writing. I compare Crichton Smith's English writing with his Gaelic and highlight where the similarities and differences lie, either thematically or stylistically. In this way, the thesis makes Crichton Smith's Gaelic writing more accessible to those who normally read only his English work. The argument I make is that it is helpful to read both, because we cannot quite be sure we truly understand the work of a bilingual writer unless we can read his/her work in both languages.