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Title: Race and nationality in the work of James Leslie Mitchell/Lewis Grassic Gibbon
Author: Idle, P. Jeremy
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1994
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This thesis covers Lewis Grassic Gibbon/James Leslie Mitchell's treatment of race in its cultural, national and biological forms. It begins with Mitchell's idiosyncratic views on the nature of history and civilisation, which cut across race issues at several key points. Studying history involves noting the elimination or disappearance of certain races; modern civilisation classifies races more cold-bloodedly and dangerously than ever before; its present violent state suggests the possible end to all life on the planet (ch.1). It moves on to Mitchell's presentation, either negative or nostalgic, of his native Scotland (ch.2) and the more positive stance on his adopted England (ch.3) before a more general survey of his highly provocative views on a number of races and nations elsewhere (ch.4). It then investigates his two-pronged presentation of humankind as a violent species - this violence coming basically from the male - yet also as a species naturally wholesome and good (ch.5). It finally identifies a wish in Mitchell, expressed through certain author-surrogates, to escape involvement with humankind, stand aloof, and watch it as if in a laboratory (ch.6). Chapters 3, 5 and 6 refer frequently to H.G. Wells's influences on Mitchell. Mitchell is revealed as a rather less socio-politically progressive figure than he has generally been taken for, and a writer whose thoughts on race and culture require more careful interpretation than has been performed by Marxists of various shades.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available