Publications and Research

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2009

Abstract

Since the 1950s, Brigadoon has been accepted as a representation of Scotland. Brigadoon’s Scotland consists of a highland landscape with lochs, mists, castles populated by fair maidens, warlike yet sensitive kilted men and bagpipers. Much of this comes from the invented traditions of Scotland, particularly kilts and clan tartans; late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Scottish literature; Scottish propaganda for tourism following WWII; and Scottish popular culture. In spite of Lerner’s well-written book, Loewe’s charming music, and Agnes De Mille’s exciting choreography, the Scottishness of the work received, and still receives, the most attention. Brigadoon’s inauthentic or dubious depiction of Scotland points to the complex relationship between popular culture, history, and art. But, is Brigadoon Scottish? While Scottish intellectuals would say no, the fact that Brigadoon draws upon Scottish literary traditions, whatScotland’s own popular culture produced as “Scottish,” and devices that are viewed as Scottish by the Western world, it is.

 
 

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