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Scotland: One Nation, Many Histories

Thursday, Nov 14 2019
19:00 - 20:30
Lesley Riddoch, Sir Geoff Palmer, Andrew Barr, Sara Sheridan
location: Assembly Roxy

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At the official launch of Edinburgh’s Independent & Radical Book Fair, 4 leading cultural figures reflect on what makes Scotland.

To launch the Radical Book Fair 2019, we’re looking back to look forward. We will explore people’s experiences of what makes Scotland, and ‘Scottishness’, and will discuss what historical chapters are significant in the intersections of today’s ideas of nationhood & identity. By creating a space for these conversations and reflections, we hope to better understand what forms of radical action are necessary in building the Scotland of tomorrow. Our panellists are some of Scotland’s leading historical and cultural commentators; journalists, novelists, historians and political pundits. They are:

Lesley Riddoch: Lesley Riddoch is an award-winning broadcaster, writer and journalist. She is a regular contributor to The Scotsman and Sunday Post and The Guardian, amongst other publications. She founded the Scottish feminist magazine Harpies and Quines, won two Sony awards for her daily Radio Scotland show and edited The Scotswoman – a 1995 edition of The Scotsman written and edited by its female staff. Her latest work is the popular Blossom: What Scotland Needs to Flourish.

Sir Geoff Palmer: Professor Sir Geoff Palmer OBE is a Professor Emeritus in the School of Life Sciences at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, and a human rights activist. Much of his work involves highlighting the relationship between Scottish history and Caribbean history, and has been a leader in this area. He is a Board Member of various organisations such as: Edinburgh and Lothian Regional Equality Council, Age Scotland and Multicultural Family Base. He has published books on different subjects, has received various research, academic and community awards and was knighted in 2014 for his contributions to science, charity and human rights.

Andrew Barr: Andrew Redmond Barr is a writer and artist with an interest in Scottish history, culture and politics. In 2016 he released his first book, Summer of Independence, a grassroots account of the 2014 independence referendum. In his latest book, The Illustrated Declaration of Arbroath, Barr brings one of Scotland’s oldest and most powerful national symbols to life, and examines the role it continues to play in modern Scottish identity.

Sara Sheridan: Sara Sheridan is a feminist historian and novelist, whose latest book, Where are the Women? A Guide to an Imagined Scotland, questions Scotland’s male-dominated landscape, and highlights the erasure of women in the nation’s development. She has written articles for a variety of newspapers from the Scotsman to the Daily Express, and is a member of the Historical Writers Association and the Crime Writers Association.

Lisa Williams: Lisa Williams is the Director of the Edinburgh Caribbean Association, and has helped develop and run the popular Black History Walking Tours of Edinburgh. and educational workshops in Scottish schools. Lisa, and ECA, also run workshops and sessions on Caribbean culture with local schools.

This event is part of Edinburgh’s 23rd Independent & Radical Book Fair, which runs from the 14th-17th November 2019. Please follow the link for details of accessibility as well as the bookshop’s safer spaces policy.

The Independent & Radical Book Fair is entirely run by Lighthouse- Edinburgh’s Radical Bookshop and we receive no outside funding. To keep the event running in this spectacular and accessible space, and to make it as welcoming as possible, a third of all tickets are FREE, and the rest are by donation. Please give as generously as you can, either online or at the book fair!


Book places here.