Although the dominant political ideology in Scotland between 1707 and the present, unionism has suffered serious neglect. One of the most distinguished Scottish historians of our time looks afresh at this central theme in Britain's history, politics and law, and traces the history of Scottish unionist ideas from the early sixteenth century to the present day. Colin Kidd demonstrates that unionism had impeccably indigenous origins long predating the Union of 1707, and that it emerged in reaction to the English vision of Britain as an empire. Far from being the antithesis of nationalism, modern Scottish unionism has largely occupied a middle ground between the extremes of assimilation to England or separation from it. At a time when the future of the Scottish union is under scrutiny as never before, its history demands Colin Kidd's lucid and cogent examination, which will doubtless generate major debate, both within Scotland and beyond.
Colin Kidd is Professor of Modern History at the University of Glasgow, and Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford.
Preface; 1. Introduction: the problems of unionism and banal unionism; 2. Unionisms before union, 1500-1707; 3. Analytic unionism and the issue of sovereignty; 4. Narratives of belonging: the history and ethnology of organic union; 5. From assimilationist jurisprudence to legal nationalism; 6. The two kingdoms and the ecclesiology of union; 7. Early nationalism as a form of unionism; 8. Conclusion.