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TITLE
Why is it important to study the past? - Andrew Mackillop
EXTERNAL ID
AB_SGI_07_ANDREW_MACKILLOP_Q_08
PLACENAME
Inverness
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona
DATE OF RECORDING
2009
PERIOD
2000s
CREATOR
Andrew Mackillop
SOURCE
Am Baile
ASSET ID
41054
KEYWORDS
conferences
emigration
lecturers
audio
audios
studypast

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As part of Homecoming Scotland 2009, a three-day international conference - Scotland's Global Impact - was held at Eden Court theatre, Inverness from 22-24 October. Prominent academics, historians and other experts came together to provoke healthy discussion on the history of migration and the influence of Scots abroad.

Am Baile interviewed several of the speakers during the conference. In this audio extract, Dr Andrew Mackillop answers the question:

'Why do you think it's important to study the past?'

'There are lots of disciplines that, that kind of think they're important - social, economic, economics politics, but the king of them all is history. It's the - the past is really about, it's about the human experience, and if we want to live properly now, and presumably in the future, then the only way that we can begin to address how you do that, is to understand the successes, and the failures, and the regrettable, and the excellent incidents and developments in out past; it's the building block of where we go from here to the future. The past is also - the past should make us humble. We should realise that we think we're facing unprecedented political, economic, social problems and that is nonsense. If you look through the past, human communities have had to deal with a whole number of problems so should we- The reason that the past is important is that it makes, or it should make us, a bit more humble about both what's excellent about our societies today, and what's bad about them, and to realise that a lot of people in the past have struggled with the same problems and come to their solutions and they're not- And therefore the reason to study the past is it's both, it's both important as a kind of sense of building a continuity, so that we remain socially aware and civically responsible, but it also is, it's important because it, it, in the end, it confirms to us that we are all humans in it together, and black, white, American, European, Muslim, Hindu, kind of all collapse in front of the fact that we've doing this for millennia, as history points out, and the past kind of levels us all to, to basically the human condition and makes us human, and for that reason it's hugely important.'


BIOGRAPHY

Dr Andrew Mackillop is a lecturer in the Department of History at the University of Aberdeen. Publications on Highland history include: 'More Fruitful than the Soil': Army, Empire and the Scottish Highlands, 1715-1815 (East Linton, 2000) and 'The Political Culture of the Scottish Highlands from Culloden to Waterloo', The Historical Journal, 46 (2003). His research interests currently centre upon the differing experiences of the Scots, Irish and Welsh in the Asian hemisphere of British imperialism during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

His most recent publication, 'A Union for Empire? Scotland, the English East India Company and the British Union', Scottish Historical Review, 87 (2008) will be followed at the end of this year by, "A Reticent People?': The Welsh in Asia, 1700-1815', in Huw Bowen (ed.), Wales and the British Empire (Manchester, 2009) and, as co-editor with Micheál O' Siochrú, Forging the State: European State Formation and the Anglo-Scottish Union of 1707 (Dundee, 2009).

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Why is it important to study the past? - Andrew Mackillop

INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona

2000s

conferences; emigration; lecturers; audio; audios; studypast;

Am Baile

Scotland's Global Impact

As part of Homecoming Scotland 2009, a three-day international conference - Scotland's Global Impact - was held at Eden Court theatre, Inverness from 22-24 October. Prominent academics, historians and other experts came together to provoke healthy discussion on the history of migration and the influence of Scots abroad. <br /> <br /> Am Baile interviewed several of the speakers during the conference. In this audio extract, Dr Andrew Mackillop answers the question:<br /> <br /> 'Why do you think it's important to study the past?' <br /> <br /> 'There are lots of disciplines that, that kind of think they're important - social, economic, economics politics, but the king of them all is history. It's the - the past is really about, it's about the human experience, and if we want to live properly now, and presumably in the future, then the only way that we can begin to address how you do that, is to understand the successes, and the failures, and the regrettable, and the excellent incidents and developments in out past; it's the building block of where we go from here to the future. The past is also - the past should make us humble. We should realise that we think we're facing unprecedented political, economic, social problems and that is nonsense. If you look through the past, human communities have had to deal with a whole number of problems so should we- The reason that the past is important is that it makes, or it should make us, a bit more humble about both what's excellent about our societies today, and what's bad about them, and to realise that a lot of people in the past have struggled with the same problems and come to their solutions and they're not- And therefore the reason to study the past is it's both, it's both important as a kind of sense of building a continuity, so that we remain socially aware and civically responsible, but it also is, it's important because it, it, in the end, it confirms to us that we are all humans in it together, and black, white, American, European, Muslim, Hindu, kind of all collapse in front of the fact that we've doing this for millennia, as history points out, and the past kind of levels us all to, to basically the human condition and makes us human, and for that reason it's hugely important.'<br /> <br /> <br /> BIOGRAPHY<br /> <br /> Dr Andrew Mackillop is a lecturer in the Department of History at the University of Aberdeen. Publications on Highland history include: 'More Fruitful than the Soil': Army, Empire and the Scottish Highlands, 1715-1815 (East Linton, 2000) and 'The Political Culture of the Scottish Highlands from Culloden to Waterloo', The Historical Journal, 46 (2003). His research interests currently centre upon the differing experiences of the Scots, Irish and Welsh in the Asian hemisphere of British imperialism during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. <br /> <br /> His most recent publication, 'A Union for Empire? Scotland, the English East India Company and the British Union', Scottish Historical Review, 87 (2008) will be followed at the end of this year by, "A Reticent People?': The Welsh in Asia, 1700-1815', in Huw Bowen (ed.), Wales and the British Empire (Manchester, 2009) and, as co-editor with Micheál O' Siochrú, Forging the State: European State Formation and the Anglo-Scottish Union of 1707 (Dundee, 2009).