Re-presenting Scotland : Scottish history and identity amongst the diaspora and on the internet
This thesis charts the perception of Scottish identity through history, with particular reference to the construction of a new, Highland stereotype of Scottish identity in the nineteenth century, and the dissemination of this identity around the world. The destruction of Scotlands origin myths and the collapse of traditional institutions of identity prior to the eighteenth century are charted, and the role of Scottish societies, Empire, the media and Scottish commercial agencies in spreading and legitimising this stereotype are analysed. It is shown that there was a fundamental shift from consumer to customer, from history to heritage at just the time a new, "tartan" confection of Scottish identity was created, which helped ingrain this image in the popular consciousness. Traditional markers of "Scottishness" are discussed, but found wanting when applied to the diaspora, and other markers for Scottish identity applicable to Scots outwith Scotland's borders are suggested. The Internet is introduced as a new medium which will have a particular impact on Scottish history and identity in the future. By allowing the democratisation of presentations of history online, the Internet enables a multiplicity of Scotlands to be presented to a massive global audience. Current initiatives concerning Scottish history online are assessed, and Scotland is found to be lagging behind contemporary countries in presenting her history, and consequently her identity, online.