The opening chapter of Christian Isobel Johnstone's Clan Albin: A National Tale has all the makings of folklore. In contrast, the opening line of Walter Scott's Tales of My Landlord, Second Series points immediately to social transformation. Clan Albin provocatively offers stinging criticism of capitalist modes of production; Johnstone focuses on the transition from arable and mixed farming to more profitable sheep farming, which depended on the clearance of large tenant populations from Highland estates in Scotland. The Heart of Mid-Lothian, on the other hand, is a novel specifically concerned with the fundamental characteristics of modernization. In this respect, Scott's second series of Tales of My Landlord contrasts sharply with Johnstone's National Tale; each depends on a fundamentally different view of modernity. In Clan Albin, modernity offers new means of improvement to be applied by traditional communities as they (or the clan chief, to be more precise) see fit.