Against Scottish Wildness

This is a tiresome article pitched as though its a new idea that nobody has thought of and that John Muir Trust ( and various NGOs and university research departments) haven’t already examined and addressed over and over again. If you don’t believe that we need places of imagination and beauty and silence and escape and places free of visible manmade constructs then join Fraser in his crusade for a devalued landscape.

This article is like being lectured on contemporary art by someone who claims their three year old daughter could do better. Its depressingly familiar and reveals a mean spiritedness that I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

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2 thoughts on “Against Scottish Wildness

  1. Just for your information, I posted this as a response to your comment on Bella Caledonia:

    “SRFM,

    There is a challenge here that ought to be addressed. As far as I can tell the story of much of rural Scotland has been one of depopulation, buildings collapsing and nature reclaiming it’s default position. I find that a rather sad back story to the challenge that you set up, viz:

    ” If you don’t believe that we need places of imagination and beauty and silence and escape and places free of visible manmade constructs then join Fraser in his crusade for a devalued landscape.”

    You sir, have never really looked at the landscape in front of you. The landscape has already been devalued by what some would see as ethnic cleansing. It is further devalued by an admiration for ruins. Preferring ruins to communties is a frankly weird sentiment. Or should we bulldoze even the ruins to return to some sort of pristine Eden?

    Is it OK if I come along and move you out of your home and then declare the ruins a nature reserve? What, apart from currency and history, is the difference? No doubt your denuded home – as it crumbles into dust – would make an excellent place of imagination and beauty. And there are lots of opportunities in Canada and Australia for your good self. That was the deal back then.

    But at what cost?”

    Interesting debate.

    • Just in case you have any doubt as to my knowledge and understanding in these matters Douglas – I have walked all over the mountains of the highlands for 40 years, I have a masters degree in Managing Sustainable Mountain Development with distinction from the Centre for Mountain Studies UHI, I was heavily involved in the Wild lands conference at SNH Battleby in 2010 http://wildlands.info/Home.html where many differing views were presented, and I live in the Highlands, so I am very aware of the complexities of the issues at stake not least the historical perspective and the feudal nature of land ownership. Without doubt I would have thriving self sustaining communities with control of their own land, but it is self defeating to suggest that by building on ‘wild land’ that would serve the needs of people in this area. I think the opposite is true, and nobody is suggesting (at least not that I have heard) bulldozing or hiding the sorry past meted out by the rich and powerful against the defenceless, nobody is evicting people these days as far as I am aware. We should celebrate and protect an incredible natural asset, and regenerate and rebalance the ecological base of our landscape for future generations. best regards Simon

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