Scotland is — for now — part of the United Kingdom. Anyone who has spent time there, from the western edge of the Hebrides to the busy streets of Glasgow to the quiet border hills, knows that Scotland is, however, an entirely different country from its neighbor, England. At the three hundredth anniversary of the signing of the act of union which joined the two nations, there’s a simmering, not to say boiling, debate over whether Scotland should stay connected to the other parts of the UK, or become politically again what it is in thought and culture, another nation.

Opinion is divided, though most Scots – 80 percent in a recent poll by the Scotsman newspaper — think Scotland will be best off on its own. Many are wary of trading British connections for entanglement in other European Union nations’ concerns, and there are matters of defense and public policy as well as social concerns, environmental actions, and relations with the United States and other countries that were fueling discussion, both public and private, this past Burns Night in Scotland.

This simmering, sometimes boiling, debate on Scotland’s future does not seem to be getting much press in America. An interesting way to keep up with what’s going on and what’s being thought is the nationhood blog, at the Scotsman’s website.

A reminder of what’s so individual about the character of Scotland, music, from Borders fiddler Shona Mooney

Kerry Dexter writes about music and creative practice at Music Road,


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