We're within a year of the independence referendum in Scotland, and Radio 4 has begun a new five-part series by Professor Murray Pittock of Glasgow University entitled The Roots of Scottish Nationalism (1.45pm, each day this week).
Out of curiosity I thought it might be interesting to see where the professor's own feelings lie on the issue of independence. Is he merely a neutral, disinterested academic [as the BBC presented him], or does he espouse a particular position?
The answer comes via The Scotsman:
Murray Pittock: Yes vote vital to realise potential
I am voting Yes because I have spent years championing the literature and culture of Scotland at home and abroad. There are people throughout the world watching us and waiting for us to join them. It won’t be a free ride: but if we decide we are confident enough to have something to give in trade or niche industries or culture or creativity, we will get something back.
Does Scotland have the self-confidence to realise what has changed, to realise the opportunities that there are, and to look to the future? There is much more to our quantifiable economic strengths, exports, education, energy and innovation than the power of positive thinking, but without it we will not develop as fast as we need to, or have the voice we ought to, in this rapidly changing world. And that is why I am voting Yes.
I'm sure it will be a fascinating series whatever, though I'm glad to know where he's coming from on the issue of Scottish independence before listening to his take. No thanks to the BBC.