Research Output per year
MacCoinnich’s research has identified how the Macleod of Lewis lordship became politically marginalised, fragmented and vulnerable prior to their expropriation in 1598. Substantial original archival research has yielded much new information on the plantations by the Fife Adventurers (1598-1609) and the Mackenzie clan (1609-1844) in the Island of Lewis. Clans were regarded as barbarous, yet the Mackenzies had a sophisticated approach to trade. Unlike their predecessors, both ‘barbarous’ and ‘civil’, the Mackenzies combined the needs of plantation with the mores of clanship and successfully established themselves in Lewis. They also had extensive trade networks in Scotland and Europe, underlined by their introduction of Dutch fishermen to Lewis (1628-30). The English-led British fishery association (1630-40) sought but failed to dislodge the Mackenzies. For the British, Lewis was key to their control over northern British waters and part of their global opposition to Dutch competition. Their presence there also, however, led to escalating Anglo-Scottish tension in the lead up to the wars of Charles I. Chapters in MacCoinnich’s forthcoming monograph provide detailed discussion of each of these plantations and appendices identify many of the participants for the first time.
Cathcart’s research has shown how Scots, both Gaels and Lowlanders, participated in plantation in Ireland and Scotland, both in official and unofficial contexts. She explored Scottish efforts to develop both agriculture and industry although not all activity was recognised for what it was: the efforts of Scottish Gaels to exploit Ireland’s resources did not align with contemporary views of ‘civility’. But sustaining these plantations required effort and the maintenance of political, social and economic relations with their wider kin groups back in Scotland. Hence, Cathcart’s research explored the communities that existed around the North Channel and this maritime component emerged as a major theme. These societies continually traversed the North Channel, a stretch of water that facilitated and maintained their economic endeavours while also bringing them into contact with other maritime communities in the same waters, whether Manx, English, French, Spanish or Dutch. Rich archival sources, such as Irish port books, and records in the Isle of Man and from local Scottish archives, have provided a wealth of information on these communities and the nature of their trade.
Both projects advocate an alternative, complementary, perspective to early modern British history and challenge contemporary and modern concepts of Gaelic barbarism and primitivism. In addition, they highlight that current historiographical frameworks are insufficient to explain fully the historical development of local or ‘peripheral’ communities. In both project the ‘periphery’ has been placed at the apex of national and transnational contexts.
|Effective start/end date||1/10/10 → 30/05/13|
- AHRC (Arts and Humanities Research Council): £150,543.00
Research output: Contribution to journal › Special issue
Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding › Chapter
Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding › Chapter (peer-reviewed)
Projects per year
Activities per year
Activity: Participating in or organising an event types › Participation in conference
Activity: Participating in or organising an event types › Participation in workshop, seminar, course