Commemoration of the South African War in Scotland, 1900–10

Elaine W. McFarland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


This article focuses on Scotland's engagement with the imperial project through the medium of its commemoration of the second South African War. It focuses on both the process of commemoration and its outputs. These included a rich and varied range of military and civic memorials, some traditionally monumental, others with a more functional intent, including educational and welfare projects. The collective memory of the war which they articulated drew overwhelmingly on Scots' perceptions of themselves as a ‘marital race’. However, the discussion also highlights the plurality of memory and the multi-layering of the commemorative experience. Thus memorials both honoured the fallen and proclaimed the justice of their cause, but the balance of their messages would shift over time, while remaining open to differing interpretations by a range of constituencies, such as grieving families, regimental comrades and civic leaders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-223
Number of pages30
JournalScottish Historical Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2010


  • Scottish history
  • South African War in Scotland


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