If Scotland: Posting 2014

if_scotland_poster2A few weeks before the 2014 referendum on Scottish independence, we held a two-day conference at the University of Stirling to imagine how the referendum might be remembered by future historians.

The event included lectures, papers, an exhibition, live youth theatre with BBC Scotland’s Generation 2014, and two set-piece debates examining speculative post-Yes and post-No Scotlands from a few decades on. Video highlights of these debates follow below.

First is the journalist and broadcaster Lesley Riddoch exploring ‘If Yes: Scottish Culture After Independence’:

Second is the novelist Ken MacLeod examining ‘If No: Scottish Culture and a New Union’:

Both talks were followed by responses from journalist David Torrance (drawing on his own speculative post-vote musings in The Battle for Britain), Professor Aileen McHarg of the University of Strathclyde, and the novelist Kirstin Innes.

Full details of the conference, including the programme and a full list of speakers, can be found at the conference website here.


If Scotland… Conjecturing 2014


Select lectures and papers from the conference appeared in a special issue of the Journal of Scottish Thought in Autumn 2016.  The full text of the special issue, co-edited at Stirling by Scott Hames and Adrian Hunter, can be accessed here, and the table of contents follows below.


Many thanks to the event’s various sponsors, including the Saltire Society, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Stirling, and the Stirling Centre for Scottish Studies. And very many thanks to Dario Sinforiani and Stirling video production students for all their work producing these short films.

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