Children and youth have tended to be under-reported in the historical scholarship. This collection of essays recasts the historical narrative by populating premodern Scottish communities from the thirteenth to the late eighteenth centuries with their lively experiences and voices. By examining medieval and early modern Scottish communities through the lens of age, the collection counters traditional assumptions that young people are peripheral to our understanding of the political, economic, and social contexts of the premodern era.
The topics addressed fall into three main sections: the experience of being a child/adolescent; representations of the young; and the construction of the next generation. The individual essays examine the experience of the young at all levels of society, including princes and princesses, aristocratic and gentry youth, urban young people, rural children, and those who came to Scotland as slaves; they draw on evidence from art, personal correspondence, material culture, song, legal and government records, work and marriage contracts, and literature.
Janay Nugent is an Associate Professor of History and a founding member of the Institute for Child and Youth Studies at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada; Elizabeth Ewan is University Research Chair and Professor of History and Scottish Studies at the Centre for Scottish Studies, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
Contributors: Katie Barclay, Stuart Campbell, Mairi Cowan, Sarah Dunnigan, Elizabeth Ewan, Anne Frater, Dolly MacKinnon, Cynthia J. Neville, Janay Nugent, Heather Parker, Jamie Reid Baxter, Cathryn R. Spence, Laura E. Walkling, Nel Whiting.