THE INTELLECTUALS, 1707–1945
DOI link for THE INTELLECTUALS, 1707–1945
THE INTELLECTUALS, 1707–1945 book
Marx derived his model from England, where the context for capitalist industry was established by a pre-nationalist struggle for legislative supremacy between King and Parliament. But England’s apparent typicality masked a distinctive national evolution: the great territorial wealth of the Whigs moulding both legislature and executive, allying with bourgeois forces and, where need be, calling on its power-bases in the periphery. After 1870 this structure would be challenged by the ‘second wave’: intellectual-directed nationalism in Wales, where the political nation had long been in abeyance, and in Ireland, where land and language issues in a peasant society helped shift nationalist activism into the intransigent mould of Sinn Fein. Intelligentsias might remedy the lack of institutions by making their collective imagination serve as a surrogate nation. Not in Scotland. Despite the semi-independent estates, a good case for legislative devolution, a command of press and public opinion, the Scots seemed only to contribute a decorative nostalgia. Even in the 1970s, after the literary renaissance and amid a political crisis, commentators such as Neal Ascherson were struck by the fact that the political and cultural inputs of the national movement simply were not synchronised.