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Author: Robert Wirth

Abstract

A.J. Cronin’s voluminous debut novel, Hatter’s Castle (1931), constitutes a reaction to the immensely popular Kailyard school of Scottish fiction of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century. Just like its anti-Kailyardian hypotext – George Douglas Brown’s The House with the Green Shutters (1901) – Hatter’s Castle subverts and undermines various conventions of the Kailyard. After delineating the profuse similarities between the two novels, this contribution will hone in on one particular sub-plot of Hatter’s Castle that deviates from its acclaimed precursor in that it features India. It will be argued that what on the surface appears to be a token inclusion and affirmation or promulgation of colonialist attitudes and thought, in fact, represents a subtle and veiled form of criticism of the colonialist ethos when looked at through the prism of the anti-Kailyard. In this way, Hatter’s Castle exemplifies the potential of middlebrow fiction to simultaneously affirm and question dominant imperial ideology.

In: Imperial Middlebrow
Author: Robert Wirth

Abstract

A.J. Cronin’s voluminous debut novel, Hatter’s Castle (1931), constitutes a reaction to the immensely popular Kailyard school of Scottish fiction of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century. Just like its anti-Kailyardian hypotext – George Douglas Brown’s The House with the Green Shutters (1901) – Hatter’s Castle subverts and undermines various conventions of the Kailyard. After delineating the profuse similarities between the two novels, this contribution will hone in on one particular sub-plot of Hatter’s Castle that deviates from its acclaimed precursor in that it features India. It will be argued that what on the surface appears to be a token inclusion and affirmation or promulgation of colonialist attitudes and thought, in fact, represents a subtle and veiled form of criticism of the colonialist ethos when looked at through the prism of the anti-Kailyard. In this way, Hatter’s Castle exemplifies the potential of middlebrow fiction to simultaneously affirm and question dominant imperial ideology.

In: Imperial Middlebrow
Author: Robert Wirth

Abstract

The stateless nation of Scotland appears to be arrested in a peculiar, liminal ‘in-between time’. Thus far, three referenda on Scotland’s constitutional relationship with the UK have been held: with the result of ever more powers being devolved from Westminster to Holyrood. The most recent decision in 2014 has once again failed to settle the matter conclusively; and it would now seem that the current uncertainties surrounding the Brexit negotiations will prolong the wait for the foreseeable future. Within this period of constitutional limbo, the patience, persistence and perseverance of the people of Scotland is continually being tested, and the prospect of a neverendum – an endless cycle of attempts to answer the Scottish question – appears increasingly daunting. This chapter delineates the role that ‘waiting’ plays in the Scottish independence debate from the 60s up until the present day and seeks to determine in what way the cultural practices of waiting can take on particular significance in decision-making within the political realm. Touching upon both temporal and spatial considerations, it will show that long periods of waiting can potentially lend legitimacy to a cause as well as shift the boundaries of agency. It will also address the questions of whether prolonged periods of stasis and ‘waiting in the wings’ can be counterproductive to achieving a desired telos, and will seek to ascertain whether this period of active inactivity in Scotland can or should be considered time wasted or time well-spent.

In: Timescapes of Waiting
Author: Robert Wirth

Abstract

The stateless nation of Scotland appears to be arrested in a peculiar, liminal ‘in-between time’. Thus far, three referenda on Scotland’s constitutional relationship with the UK have been held: with the result of ever more powers being devolved from Westminster to Holyrood. The most recent decision in 2014 has once again failed to settle the matter conclusively; and it would now seem that the current uncertainties surrounding the Brexit negotiations will prolong the wait for the foreseeable future. Within this period of constitutional limbo, the patience, persistence and perseverance of the people of Scotland is continually being tested, and the prospect of a neverendum – an endless cycle of attempts to answer the Scottish question – appears increasingly daunting. This chapter delineates the role that ‘waiting’ plays in the Scottish independence debate from the 60s up until the present day and seeks to determine in what way the cultural practices of waiting can take on particular significance in decision-making within the political realm. Touching upon both temporal and spatial considerations, it will show that long periods of waiting can potentially lend legitimacy to a cause as well as shift the boundaries of agency. It will also address the questions of whether prolonged periods of stasis and ‘waiting in the wings’ can be counterproductive to achieving a desired telos, and will seek to ascertain whether this period of active inactivity in Scotland can or should be considered time wasted or time well-spent.

In: Timescapes of Waiting
In: Timescapes of Waiting
In: Timescapes of Waiting
Spaces of Stasis, Delay and Deferral
Timescapes of Waiting explores the intersections of temporality and space by examining various manifestations of spatial (im-)mobility. The individual articles approach these spaces from a variety of academic perspectives – including the realms of history, architecture, law and literary and cultural studies – in order to probe the fluid relationships between power, time and space.
The contributors offer discussion and analysis of waiting spaces like ante-chambers, prisons, hospitals, and refugee camps, and also of more elusive spaces such as communities and nation-states.

Contributors: Olaf Berwald, Elise Brault-Dreux, Richard Hardack, Kerstin Howaldt, Robin Kellermann, Amanda Lagji, Margaret Olin, Helmut Puff, Katrin Röder, Christoph Singer, Cornelia Wächter, Robert Wirth.