"With wealth come wants": Scottish Romanticism as improvement in the Fiction of John Galt

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Date: Mar. 22, 2016
From: Studies in Romanticism(Vol. 55, Issue 1.)
Publisher: Boston University
Document Type: Article
Length: 9,885 words

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A RECURRING SET PIECE IN JOHN GALT'S NOVEL OF 1823, THE ENTAIL, emblematizes the protagonist's tortured obsession with the ancestral lands that it has been his life's work to regain. Dispossessed as a young man, Claud Walkinshaw has made recovering and safeguarding his hereditary estate the "actuating principle of his life." This fixation is reflected in the ageing Claud's compulsive visits to a viewpoint that overlooks the now-reclaimed Kittlestonheugh lands:

   On gaining the brow of the hill, he halted, and once more surveyed
   the scene. For a moment it would seem that a glow of satisfaction
   passed over his heart; but it was only a hectical flush, instantly
   succeeded by the nausea of moral disgust; and he turned abruptly
   around, and seated himself with his back towards the view which had
   afforded him so much pleasure. In this situation he continued some
   time, resting his forehead on his ivory-headed staff, and with his
   eyes fixed on the ground. (1)

Claud's "nausea of moral disgust" prevents him from being able to look upon the estates he has idolized--at the cost of sacrificing social values and practices, including disinheriting his first-born. Holding the "ivory-headed staff" (183) that we learn is adorned with the meaningful symbol of a lone silver eye, this pedlar-turned-Glasgow-grandee experiences a profound moral unease towards the end of a single-minded life of what Galt calls "gathering" (150): the accumulation of wealth. Claud is importantly motivated by his fanatical pride in hereditary status, and the sense of just desserts in this passage is aimed primarily at that weakness via another: simple avarice. Yet both faults are serving here as parts of a wider meditation on an explicitly national narrative. This moment of moral outrage and self-disgust is one significant example from a novel that deals in striking fashion with a whole series of social, political, and moral anxieties occasioned by the preceding period in national history, Scotland's "Age of Improvement." (2) Furthermore, while the project of The Entail sees Galt's historical analysis vividly disintegrate--through both formal and thematic means--into pessimism, this can be read as an amplification of tensions already inherent within his oeuvre, as demonstrated in the Annals of the Parish of 1821. (3)

If Scottish literature of the early nineteenth century owes much to the cultural influence of the capital city of Edinburgh, Galt is a writer for whom Scotland's western urban center is still more important. Building on his roots in Irvine and Greenock, Galt's work particularly reflects the experience of the west, concentrated around the emerging imperial trading hub of Glasgow. As Glaswegian merchants gorged themselves on the profits of colonial markets--becoming "an oligarchy, as proud and sacred, in what respects the reciprocities of society, as the famous Seignories of Venice and Genoa" (Entail 109)--a rapid transformation of the west seemed to focus the broader trajectory of Lowland Scotland. From the perspective of the 1820s, a frequently accelerated process of economic and social change in Scotland since the mid eighteenth century was evident. In critical terms this embedded "improvement"--the Enlightenment's ubiquitous doctrine of progress--as a term of paradigmatic importance for the period. Centered on this vital keyword used by Scots in many areas of life, discourses of improvement represent the ideological pressures produced at this early phase of modernization and globalization. Christopher J. Berry has recently offered a lucid articulation of the centrality of improvement to the complex formation of the Scottish Enlightenment (including its widespread association with the formation and consolidation of the British state). (4) Improvement is not exclusively a commercial paradigm, yet as the narrative by which Enlightenment conjectural history understood the transition from previous stages of civilization to commercial modernity, it occasions a crucial intersection in discourse between progress and commerce. (5) That said, as is well borne out in Galt's work, the realm of improving discourse is by no means unequivocal in its celebration of such "progress." In the introduction to her edited volume on Galt, Regina Hewitt notes the affinities between his uncertain attitude to improvement and the pessimistic strain in Scottish Enlightenment historiography epitomized by Adam Ferguson. (6) While in her volume Hewitt wants to stress Galt's analysis of the "dynamics" of society above his evaluation of what she calls the "progress plot," I focus here on the intersection of these spheres, engaging with the author's nuanced discussion of the mechanisms of rapid change and its impact on Scottish culture at both a local and national level. (7)

Swaying between an investment in the value of Scottish cultural forms and a confidence in modernization, Galt's Scottish novels dovetail and exemplify the conflicting pressures which improvement brings to bear. This situation can usefully be examined via Raymond Williams's conceptual framework of the "dominant," the "residual" and the "emergent" as the three "elements" that are "active in the cultural process." (8) If the improving priorities of imperial Britain are increasingly dominant during the period then we can constellate the cultural milieu in relation to this. While the Scottish context helps to occasion many forms of emergent cultural production across the long eighteenth century, the residual category is of particular application when considering the negotiation of Scottish cultural forms both within and against the developing imperial hegemony. Williams notes:

   The residual, by definition, has been effectively formed in the
   past, but it is still active in the cultural process, not only and
   often not at all as an element of the past, but as an effective
   element of the present. (9)

Such residual cultural formations are often at the forefront in Galt. His Scottish novels are at pains to explore the capacity of the modernizing imperial framework to cope with, and to sustain, the presence of localized, historically rooted and distinctive emanations of Scottishness. Themselves flawed and problematic, these native modes of cultural expression are seen to maintain a difficult relationship to the dominant modernizing apparatus. Galt explores this situation with a fragile optimism, potentially yielding to a Gothic typology of haunting, as the stifled narratives of residual Scottishness resurface to challenge the British hegemony. Reflecting on the vigorous encroachments of capital into a society understood as a series of symbiotic localities, residual culture can offer Galt an effective theme of protest, citing the moral ambiguities inherent in a new, dominant network of macroeconomic power. Yet while Scottish national character can function as a subtle moral security in Galt's portrayal of the brink of modernity in the west of Scotland, it can also be reduced to a sinister, twisted force percolating through the new commercial world.

The acuity with which Galt's work navigates this ambiguous history establishes it as a key vehicle for the ongoing reconceptualization of Scottish Romanticism. A burgeoning critical consensus holds that, due to significant cultural and political differentials, Scottish Romanticism requires to be dealt with as a linked yet in many ways discrete phenomenon from a still-predominant Anglocentric model. (10) Working within this frame, the Union of 1707 needs to be considered as one motor in a long trajectory that would propel Scottish society to the forefront of a global imperial hegemony while providing a set of unresolved challenges to Scottish subjectivity. If, as Saree Makdisi writes, "Romanticism can be partly understood as a diverse and heterogeneous series of engagements with modernization," then this is borne out particularly well in the Scottish context. In fact, beyond the symbiotic "romantic critique" of modernization emphasized by Makdisi, the Scottish perspective amply demonstrates that our base definition of Romanticism must encompass a more holistic view of the modernizing field. (11) A pervasive "dialectics of improvement" runs throughout the period and its literature, frequently understood via the negotiation of residual Scottish cultural formations against a dominant Britishness that could monopolize discourses of improvement. Contesting its own productions of the discourses of modernity, Scotland, as both social text and site of action, provides a consistent examination of the dialectic and equivocal nature of "progress." By considering Scottish Romanticism as a varied, modal series of literary works coordinated around the idea of improvement, we can open up this perspective and reap the full benefit of its example. Galt's fiction offers a prime instance of the salience of this method of conceptualizing long eighteenth-century Scottish writing, a natural direction for the field in the attempt to clarify a distinctively national voice within a "four-nations" approach to British literature. Indeed, while Galt's unorthodox literary method can be viewed as acutely counter-Romantic, his oeuvre should instead encourage a supple taxonomic discipline attuned to this key area of concern. Focusing our attention on the ambivalent narratives of progress that converge around improving discourse in Scotland allows us to illuminate how deeply aesthetic innovation during this period is implicated in a sequence of acute historical and ethical challenges to the national subjectivity, yielding new clarity on both the ideological makeup of Scottish Romanticism and the formation's paradigmatic lessons for Romanticism further afield.

Galt's fiction is significantly juxtaposed against the developing bildungsroman form with its stress on the individual. Instead his concern resides primarily with a network of causation: individual will is vividly incorporated within a vast matrix of interlocking and inextricable connections from which it cannot and must not be extricated. (12) If this partly offers an endorsement of conformity, it also feeds a sophisticated view of social history as a kind of mass kinesis, heavily influenced by Enlightenment thinkers including Adam Ferguson. (13) This systemic perspective informs Galt's claim on the innovative literary form that he terms "theoretical history." Resonating with the Enlightenment conjectural historiography of which it is in some respects the most palpable literary descendent, the term neatly encapsulates his proposed aesthetic program. His theoretical histories, then, are to perform a speculative interrogation of social, political, and cultural conditions not strictly based on specific, "factual" examples, yet striking at a particular kind of certifiable reality. In contrast to the Coleridgean or Keatsian nod to the creative imagination as a guarantor of some form of truth, Galt often justifies the validity of his tales by way of the same arguments that were applied to Enlightenment reconstructions of ancient history: a reasoned likelihood of truth based on a careful examination of macroscopic human patterns. This assumption of empiricism sanctions the memorable comment on his literary productions, in which Galt announces that, "the best of them are certainly deficient in the peculiarity of the novel, " lacking "a consistent fable" or "story." (14)

The wilful rejection of "story" becomes a central element of Galt's theoretical method. As Ian Duncan comments, rejecting the overarching and complex plotting of romance as purveyed by Walter Scott,

   Galt cleaves to a trompe-l'oeil mimicry of those secular narrative
   forms, admitted to the fold of historiography in the late
   Enlightenment, that have transmitted the historical record without
   the conspicuous imposition of a plot: memoir, anecdote, local
   annals or chronicle, the "statistical account." (15)

Thus Galt further emerges as a faithful novelist (retaining the term) of improvement, his work concerned with replicating not only the subject matter but also the key non-fictional textual forms of the improving trajectory (we should also mention periodicals here). (16) In practice Galt's limitation of the fictional is far from watertight and indeed the proximity between romance plotting and conjectural history's faith in archetypal experience may prefigure the studied collapse of Galt's aesthetic framework in The Entail. Yet it is probably most faithfully realized in Annals of the Parish, partly a direct reflection of the Statistical Account of Scotland in both subject matter and narrative style. (17) Appropriating the Account's formal mediation through the eyes of parish ministers, Galt replicates its miscellaneous concern with detailed local enquiry, producing a striking textual echo, even ironic replica, of this key contemporary work. (18) If the Account was designed as a tool of improvement, Annals of the Parish allows us to view these processes dynamically unfolding. Although the mode of Annals is never exactly replicated, it provides an informative basis for Galt's ensuing literary career (even when only as an overruled model), something reflected in his publication of subsequent important texts under the moniker of the "Author of Annals of the Parish." (19) Furthermore, as specifically a precedent for the more expansive project of The Entail, Annals allows us to identify the growing tensions in Galt's literary negotiation of Scotland.

1. Enlightened Fiction: Annals of the Parish

At the beginning of Galt's best-known novel, Micah Balwhidder is placed as the parish minister for Dalmailing. It is 1760, the year of George ill's ascension to the British throne. This contiguity is key to the construction of the work, in which small-scale local events are linked to wider national and global affairs, all part of the same interlocking system (1). Balwhidder's appointment is a contentious one, reflecting the agitation over patronage that remained a source of widespread disaffection throughout the period. A member of the Moderate party in the Kirk, he is selected by a patron, conflicting with the popular Evangelical desire for parishioners to choose their own minister (5). This is a notable signposting at the opening of the text, establishing the terms of a contest between residual culture and improvement. The perceived imposition of the appointment quickly gives way to acceptance, yet the suggestion that Balwhidder represents the modernizing wing of the Kirk at this stage is interesting, as we will see him subsequently struggle to comprehend or endorse the pace of social change. This is apparent in episodes such as his complaint about a young minister's "Englified" language: by this point Balwhidder's taste for the "plain auld Kirk of Scotland" has lost touch with "the younger part of the congregation" (122). A significant generational gap has opened up in Scottish society, alienating the minister's investment in residual cultural forms. While, often after the fact, Balwhidder achieves a largely positive outlook on improvement during the epoch traced by Annals--his providentialist faith in God's plan affording significant reassurance--his attachment to expressions of residual Scottish particularism weakens his relationship to the institutional drive of Edinburgh's metropolitan elite. Though by no means a defensive Scottish patriot (note the personal identification with George II) , the minister is consistently troubled by the relationship of improvement to national character, even if, as Martha Bohrer argues, he himself is "unconsciously" improved along with his community. (20) Surveying this pattern, the novel is the elderly Balwhidder's retrospective meditations upon his time in Dalmailing, laying particular emphasis on cumulative improvements. A hostage to the growing forces of a globalized imperial market, the village experiences a steady penetration of its rural way of life by technological, cultural and political innovation.

Galt subtly commingles human agency with the apparently inexorable material forces drawing Dalmailing into British modernity. When Lord Eglesham is catapulted from his coach to land head-first in a midden, this occasions the improvement of the road; yet the human prompt is soon subsumed within the text's litany of similar occurrences, becoming incidental in a general trend that perhaps all along rendered the process inevitable. (21) Balwhidder, of course, sees the agency of providence at work here, with God having abashed Eglesham's pride (40-42). Yet as the reader is invited to perceive, the true invisible forces at work in Dalmailing are those of modernization and globalization, products of a comprehensive scheme of constituent agents. Charting the globalizing economy of the west of Scotland--particularly exposed to such influences through its pivotal imperial trade position--Galt's text narrates the evolution of a local community slowly establishing firmer links with a broader geographical zone.

Confronted by this steady change, Balwhidder's sporadic verdicts on the process show him wrestling between his instinctive conservatism and a somewhat lagging respect for innovation, the text exhibiting a deep sensitivity to the dilemma of improvement:

   At the time, these alterations and revolutions in the parish were
   thought a great advantage; but now when I look back upon them, as a
   traveller on the hill over the road he has passed, I have my
   doubts. For with wealth come wants, like a troop of clamorous
   beggars at the heels of a generous man, and it's hard to tell
   wherein the benefit of improvement in a country parish consists,
   especially to those who live by the sweat of their brow. (48)

Significant here is the description of improvements under the rubric of "alterations and revolutions," the latter term particularly invoking the political unrest that at various points plagues Balwhidder's ministry. In certain lights, improvement can be as disquieting as radical discontent for the rural minister. Duncan is correct to point out the text's demonstration of the positive influence of commercialization, in one instance exemplifying Adam Smith's theory of capitalism's "invisible hand" at work (the historical precursor to the dubious "trickle-down effect"). (22) Yet improvement also brings "wants" and could have a morally detrimental effect on hardworking rural life. Of course, Smith himself flags such concerns when discussing the social impact of the division of labor. Specialization is capable of producing workers "as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to become," while also incurring a worrying decline from the collective martial responsibility Smith cites in classical models. (23) Furthermore, as Balwhidder's complaint about "Englified" language makes clear, elements in the improving trajectory may pose a threat to a localized way of life associated with residual Scots-cultural integrity.

Galt foregrounds a vacillation over the effects of improvement when discussing the writing of Annals in his autobiography. Recounting a visit to the village of Inverkip, he meditates on the "progress [that] had been made in turning it inside out":

The alteration was undoubtedly a great improvement, but the place seemed to me neither so picturesque nor primitive as the old town, and I could not refrain from lamenting the change, as one sighs over the grave of an old man. (Autobiography 2:227)

Annals highlights the beneficial effects of the changes seen in Dalmailing, yet adequate space remains in the ideological framework of the text to register their threatening aspects. This sense is further confirmed by P. H. Scott's relation of the Rousseau essay Galt associates with his endeavor, concerning the question: "Has the progress of the arts and sciences contributed more to the corruption or purification of morals?" (24) By diminishing the "picturesque" and the "primitive," processes of "alteration" exert a disquieting agency upon this figuring of a national heartland. While Balwhidder's own conservation of national character seems to offer a level of assurance on the improving trajectory, still the potential antagonisms cannot be ignored. Bohrer argues that the minister "illustrates the moral sentiments necessary for the humane functioning of laissezfaire capitalism," yet there is a threatening suggestion that this ethical stability is a direct product of the local system that is acted upon by modernization. (25) Thus a faith in residual Scottishness maintains the power to upset the positive trend, the fading of the "old man" of traditional practice a cause for ambivalence.

The text's fidelity to the form of the yearly record is significant, above and beyond facilitating Galt's charting of the ongoing, local manifestations of global improvement. This is also a material reflection of his publishing experiences. Seeming tailor-made for serialization (though Annals was not itself published in serial form), Galt's theoretical history flaunts the shaping influence of his role writing for Blackwood's Magazine, with compact, relatively self-contained units unfolding the story. Frank Hallam Lyell notices this point with regard to Galt's vocal denials of the novel form. (26) Certainly the segmented format helps to underwrite the refusal of a "consistent fable" across the scope of a longer piece, even if the ideological bent of these linked annalistic passages has less to do with their length and more to do with an assault on the romance contents of prose fiction per se.

That said, recent criticism has focused on Galt's usage of short pieces as a rebuttal to the increasing dominance of the novel and its characteristic tendencies. His stressing of community above individuality is contextualized by Bohrer within the generic form of "tales of locale," which deny the "romantic reconciliation of class differences as advanced in the novel," instead picturing "a community that functions as part of a material, global economy." (27) Also coordinating Galt's denial of novelistic romance via genre is Caroline McCracken-Flesher, who focuses on the even more fragmentary form of the "sketch," where "inadequate narrators" combine with "shifting perspectives" to illustrate "the wonderful impossibility of plot, or of 'fable' with its limitations to meaning." (28) Working along similar lines, Duncan comments on serialized narratives as particularly amenable to "the effects of fragmentation and heterogeneity." Yet, taking a different tack to McCracken-Flesher, he submits that "incompletion" in Galt has the potential to invite a kind of "participatory narration," demanding the reader's dynamic collaboration in the construction of a story's "virtual community"--thus construing fragmentation as a generative rather than resistive function. (29) On a connected note, Robert Morrison pulls back the frame to discuss the potential in the magazine form for surrounding articles to extend and modify meaning. (30) However, if the open-ended short fiction most acutely typified by the "sketch" sits alongside the theoretical history as another rebuttal of the novelistic vending of romance, then perhaps a work like Annals partakes of something of both forms. While not as radically disrupted as, for example, McCracken-Flesher's models, Annals offers an integral, even flagship example of Galt's undercutting of the rising bildungsroman: a process at once generic, ideological, and thematic.

Annals's structure is also a pivotal layer in Galt's careful mirroring of the textual apparatus of improvement. The contemporary periodical press, alluded to both directly and obliquely by the work, was a key site for such debates. Not least in this was Balwhidder's own preferred reading material, The Scots Magazine, whose "eclectic mix of subjects" and "annual January summary of the foregoing year's foreign affairs" are far from coincidental. (31) Across this yearly unfolding of the minister's life, however, we find a profound stylistic debt to Sinclair's Statistical Account, and not merely in terms of improving ideology, statistical enquiry, or segmented analysis. The imposition of Balwhidder's slightly eccentric narration is also a subtle nod to Galt's source, which contains an entertaining variety of personalities. For example, in her study of the Old Statistical Account (Galt is writing a decade before the appearance of the second Account), Maisie Steven finds that the contributor for Fala and Soutra in the Lothians "resorts to sarcasm," and she complains: "It is only fashionable for the lower classes of people to attend the church. The higher orders are above the vulgar prejudice of believing it is necessary to worship the God of their fathers." (32) Through the visibility of Balwhidder's persona--with his religiously centered opinions--Galt is able to demonstrate the interaction between an individual mind and the world. (33) Indeed, unstably vacillating between an acknowledgment of the importance of human activity and a faith in God's plan, the minister functions as a caricatured and inverted version of our own experience in reading the novel, as we explore the available positions. It is this fluid, ironic perspective that permits Annals its complex judgmental framework, maneuvering us through a doubled perspective, chronicling how a worldview fits itself to circumstances, alongside the limitations, inconsistencies, and consolation inherent in this process.

Mathew Wickman suggests that Balwhidder's attempts to rationalize a hugely complex global reality are presented as necessarily imperfect, that the text ultimately explodes a systematic understanding of the world. A denial of simplicity certainly rings true as part of Galt's assertion of vast, cryptic involvedness in place of the threads of "story," and Wickman neatly identifies the ironic limitation imposed on Balwhidder's worldview. Yet while he argues that the rendering of localized experience within a coherent network per se must resolve itself as an insufficient kind of mythmaking, this risks underestimating globalization itself, the complexity of which may be inconceivable without rendering it illusory. (34) Indeed, we may be inclined to insist that Annals's notion of a "great web of commercial reciprocities" (180) only signifies an inevitable and primordial condition being rendered more tangible: the idea of a truly isolated system on earth, whether economic, ecological , or otherwise, is a fantasy. The metaphor of the web does nicely foreground the tense narrativity of improvement in the text, as we will see. Perhaps more pertinently, however, Galt's thematic focus on interconnectedness may provide a subtler, even inadvertent, reflection back onto his programmatic literary approach. In this purest emanation of the theoretical history, perhaps the globalizing imperial economy becomes itself the methodological suppressor of romance, consuming, by demystifying, the enigmatic ideological and imaginative spaces it requires. In this rendering of an age of limitless connection, ideas like "story" and mystery may be posed as a faded possibility as much as a redundant excess.

Perhaps dramatizing the ideological demands of modernity--excavating the role of imagination in a process of constant, worldwide revelation--Balwhidder's statistical account of Dalmailing does stay remarkably faithful to its aesthetic agenda. Epitomizing Galt's denial of plotting, the text formulates an innovative narrative methodology by appropriating the discourses of empirical analysis found in its non-fictional precedents and thus, as Duncan comments, resisting the engagement of an "allegorical mode." (35) Disclaiming the imposition of an external meaning upon events, Annals navigates the world according to Balwhidder through a methodical, journalistic sequence of events: exploring the complex terrain of a globalizing economy described through Newtonian rubric. Balwhidder's own attempts at allegory--his faith in the workings of providence--form a pseudo-comic foil to the text's own ideological position, in which meaning is an internal, metonymic product of the complex workings of economic and social progress. Yet while The Entail will see Galt's refutation of "story" vividly collapse, there are also studied chinks in the non-fictional armor of Annals (above and beyond the necessary shortcomings in Galt's paradoxical literary ideal), as in the baleful imagery of orphaned children waiting "on the green" (182), which Duncan reads as a reflection of the relationship between capitalism and war threatening to impose itself as a sinister grand narrative. (36) However, despite such tensions and Balwhidder's alternative viewpoint--itself a form of romance, religion seen as partly motivated by an archaic need for "story"--the novel goes to great lengths to ensure a secular, non-allegorical explanation for itself.

Annals of the Parish is probably the text which best exemplifies Galt's literary ideology in practice, his ideal of a non-fictional fiction. Appropriating a mode of empirical enquiry from influences including the Statistical Account, Balwhidder's tale charts the dramatic experience of improvement in a pinpointed area of the west of Scotland, marking its emergence as a new form of locality, a segment or circle of influence amongst an ever-expanding network of consolidating imperial power. Seeing beyond Balwhidder's stubborn faith in God's plan, the reader is faced with a far more ambiguous moral situation. Partly construed as the loss of the local as a site of cultural particularism, of stability--perhaps even of imaginative and narrative freedom--imperial globalization brings an uncertain energy to bear. Dramatizing the visible rise of a network of constant interrelation, or "history," the theoretical history of Annals seems to intertwine its topical focus and methodological basis: a global awareness suppressing the shadowy ideological space for romance or "story." There is an unavoidable irony, of course, in that this supposedly naked image of history constantly resolves itself into one of the most significant grand narratives of all: the inexorable rise of commercialism. However, like its inspiration in the Account, Galt's text ably demonstrates a distance between the "Enlightened" project of Balwhidder's ostensible aim and the interjection of his personal urges, prejudices, and opinions. In this respect, the critique of improvement is granted a human touch, allowing us to recognize the impact of rapid social progress upon an individual. As the minister moves from a position of perceived dangerous novelty at his appointment to become a cultural relic, the text exemplifies the dizzying speed of improvement in this period and begins to hint at the intellectual and moral problems this brings.

2. National Crisis: The Entail

"LET GLASGOW FLOURISH!" runs the civic motto that closes The Entail (364). The city is especially central here, its accelerated admittance into the spoils of a globalizing empire providing Galt with rich illustrative potential. The novel frequently asserts that if Edinburgh is the legal and cultural capital of Scotland, Glasgow is its commercial powerhouse--a town of "Fatted calves, and feasting Belshazers"--marking it out as a representative site for the period's rapid economic development (355-56). Just beyond its halfway point, the novel informs us, "a general spirit of improvement ... was then gradually diffusing itself over the face of the west country" (205). Change is foregrounded then, within a text that charts an entire historical trajectory and asks a series of difficult questions about what this narrative means for Scottish (and indeed British) identities. Alyson Bardsley theorizes that The Entail, "criticizes the fervor of collective identity it associates with nationalism and renders its pursuit tragic and ridiculous." (37) In parts such "fervor" is dramatically shown as a septic and ironically self-serving expedient, one that leads to isolation and social breakdown. Yet if this represents a dismissal or critique of nationalism per se, it is at least equally concerned to demonstrate the incongruous ideological marriages that fissure this collapsing framework, rendering an articulate national identity either sinister or unattainable. Unfolding a series of personal and collective crises in a text that porously reflects and ridicules the state of the literary tradition, this novel is Galt's extended essay on the Scotland of his day. Improvement and progress, alongside residual-cultural conservation or nostalgia, all take on a very ambivalent character indeed.

The Entail wastes no time in beginning to construct the intricate framework that regularly threatens to form the text into a full-blown allegory of national history. Indeed, the story of the Walkinshaw family is so roundly figurative that it might seem heavy-handed, if this density was not in itself exactly the point. The saturation of the novel with touchstone historical episodes and allusions creates a realm in which such superstructural evocations become an obsessive and counter-productive language. A victim of his father's involvement in Scotland's attempt to become an independent imperial power through the Darien project, Claud's rise to regain his ancestral estate charts a long and flawed journey of improvement, with attendant moral emergencies. Given Darien's position as a key perceived motivator behind the Act of Union, Claud's poverty and subsequent "gathering" carry a heavy national-symbolic load. In her role as early protector ot Claud, the lingering servant Maudge Dobbie embodies the final vestige of his family's standing, and is the provider of "goblin lore and romantic stories" of the national past. However, at this early stage the boy displays a predilection for the (here Anglocentric and metropolitan) fiction of economic accumulation: he "early preferred the history of Whittington and his Cat to the achievements of Sir William Wallace" (3-4). Yet the description of patriotic Scottish history as a quasi-mythical romantic area to which Claud's avaricious taste is disinclined is slightly misleading. For central to the problem of his life is an infatuation with his family's lost status that is profoundly represented as irrational or foolishly idealistic. As Galt writes, "avarice with him was but an agent in the pursuit of that ancestral phantom which he worshipped as the chief, almost the only good in life" (76). His sacrificial pursuit of former glories occasions the disinheritance of his favorite and eldest son--transgressing against "the natural way"--as only the most prominent example in a life in which emotional ties and personal social gratification are muted (57). A throwback to a period of feudal allegiance--or as his wife (known as "the Leddy") puts it, the "papistical and paternostering" times--Claud's goal places an inappropriate historical burden upon the commercial environment of modernizing Scotland (259). With his eldest and youngest sons demarking the alternative possibilities presented to eighteenth-century Britain--Hanoverian George and Jacobite Charles--Claud's motives depict a fatal misalignment of the ideological framework in contemporary society, with his family symbolizing a culture divided between incompatible and antagonistic polarities: "humanity" (incorporating cultural and social ties) appears to be ranged against "economy" (financial and emotional) by virtue of a miscarrying historical narrative. In this context, history as improvement seems to be an extremely painful prospect.

The world of the novel is one in which the strictures, terminology, and attitudes of an arid legal culture are exercising a suffocating influence. This is, after all, a text narrated by a lawyer, one that takes as both its title and its central plot device a constrictive legal fiction--the entail. The entailing of land was a highly relevant issue around the early nineteenth century, by which time approximately fifty percent of Scotland was held under this method. With the Abolition of Heritable Jurisdictions Act of 1746, following the Jacobite Rising, the reform of land law represented a key thrust of the modernization of society. Yet entails offered an interesting succor to this process, providing "a grant binding heirs through a legal device to the same degree that feudal law had bound them, but on the terms of the new commercial society." (38) In this sense, then, the entail is a throwback to a former time--perhaps even a Gothic remnant--and is thus the appropriate tool for Claud's retrospective passion. Indeed the legal fiction was explicitly attacked by Adam Smith as a sacrifice of the future to the past, in a passage that may have provided significant inspiration for Galt's novel: "They are founded upon the most absurd of all suppositions ... that the poverty of the present generation should be restrained and regulated according to the fancy of those who died perhaps five hundred years ago." Awkwardly locking land into large estates, the device is a direct impediment to the modernization of the land for Smith, who notes: "It seldom happens ... that a great proprietor is a great improver." (39) An "instrument that articulates the trace of the feudal in the commercial," (40) the entail represents the problematic culture clash with which the novel is concerned, being one of its dangerous, even monstrous results. If the medieval English fable of Dick Whittington is featured as offering a narrative seed for modern British commercialism, the entail as a pre-British leftover inverts this perspective. Positioned as the symbol of a historical crux, it is the unifying emblem of the text's epistemological battles, variously expressed as emotion versus commerce, religion versus law, romance versus history, or nature versus its abomination. Such conflict is exemplified in the lawyer Keelevin's attempts to persuade Claud against his plan to secure his lands via an entail and thus pervert the normal patrilineal succession. He complains, "there's no Christianity in this." Claud's reply is succinct: "But there may be law, I hope" (57).

Galt is partly engaging upon a black exploration of the workings of capitalism in the absence of Smith's succoring agency of "sympathy." (41) Among its striking framework of legalese, the novel is punctuated by commercial modes of expression, with even metaphysical machinery described under the rubric of commerce: "Life is but a weaver's shuttle, and Time a Wabster, that works for Death, Eternity, and Co. great whole merchants" (279). Yet if one of the divisions the text makes is between a modernizing commercial society and a residual Scots culture, endless legal disputation is seen to be an element of both, reinforcing the roundly pessimistic tone, which poses no simple juxtaposition between right and wrong alternatives. While unrestrained commercialism emerges as a weaponized form of self-interest, so too more traditional social relations--such as family lineage--are tainted in a bleak Hobbesian image of human motivations. Lawyers are shown to have a rather unethical power, positioned at the heart of the social model: "grasping, as they do, the whole concerns and interests of the rest of the community" (55). Duncan makes the observation that Galt's sustained attack on legal casuistry forms part of a broader statement:

   The Entail articulates a sharp critique, from the empirical-realist
   perspective of a West-country merchant class, of an Edinburgh
   noblesse du robe which misrecognizes commercial society through its
   promotion of an ideology of feudal nostalgia. This
   (crypto-Jacobite) Edinburgh ascendancy includes not just the law
   but the literary culture which disciplines the city's professions
   and institutions, exemplified by the cultural industry of romance
   revival. (42)

We should stress that the members of this "West-country merchant class" are themselves targeted in a text that is also suspicious of excessively financial motives. Yet Duncan rightly identifies the thematic element that demonizes an Edinburgh-based foil to a Glaswegian commercial ideal, incorporating the law and literature in a denunciation that it is hard not to sense may be aimed personally at Scott. While this attack partly plays on a broader suspicion of Edinburgh as "the intellectual city"--invoking the city's academic culture and "metaphysical refinement" in a sweeping mockery of east-coast pretentiousness--a particular component does shine through (179, 187). Mirroring Claud's inappropriate commingling of feudalism and commercialism, the "awfu' folk wi' the cloaks o' darkness and the wigs o' wisdom frae Edinbro'" signify a sinister incursion into the present, one element defiling the ideological contiguity of Scottish society (203). Figured by the act of writing as centered on the entail itself, this "romance revival" invites an anachronistic worldview into the domain of improving Scotland. Consequently, when Keelevin is fretting about the morality of the entail, Claud's dismissal of him with, "Ye're, as I would say, but the pen in this matter," ends up in fact emphasizing rather than scorning the lawyer's problematic agency (72). In a sense, then, The Entail can be said to mount a dual attack on a culture of legalism, as at once the vulgar servant of a ruthless commercialism, and the sinister remnant of a previous epoch. Within this blighted context, the division between Scotland's two main urban centers is a significant device, with commercial Glasgow and romantic Edinburgh symbolizing a fragmented national subjectivity. Whether by virtue of an inappropriate historical nostalgia or an absence of sympathetic emotion, the social framework through which The Entail moves is stiflingly inadequate. The recurring slogan of the text--"sufficient for the day is the evil thereof"--ironically enunciates its ideological problematic, with a flawed present little able to suffer the baggage of a fading past (14).

Operating in this bleak environment, many of Galt's characters appear to be suffering from emotional dysfunction. Even the narrator claims, with ambiguous comic intent, to have no experience or understanding of love (305). Claud's ungrateful treatment of his caretaker Maudge signals the first of a chain of failed or overloaded sympathetic ties in the work (150). In particular the breakdown of mother-child relationships (repeated through the Leddy's sequence of family feuds) seems to signal a national emotional crisis, close familial ties rendered poisonous and inoperative. As the text's vessel for the romantic stories of national history, Claud's specific neglect of Maudge, indeed, seems to hint at broader betrayals--perhaps the Act of Union, or residual cultural alienation over the period. Claire A. Simmons also notes an irony here, in that despite his "feudal ambitions," Claud's treatment of Maudge goes against his traditional feudal obligation to her, another result of the text's systematic mismarriages. (43) Yet while the Faustian resonances of Claud's misaligned affections are wrapped up in a warped ideological field--actually displaying, for the narrator, "a spectacle of moral bravery"--his wife appears to be more simply devoid of human sympathy (140). When later in the text James Walkinshaw provides a kind of internal critique, complaining of his family's destructive selfishness--represented in the suitably economic term "interest"--he only registers a fraction of the novel's wider problematic (239). This is a text in which widespread dissociation seems to have rendered the national community a barren and self-defeating construct, falling short in various directions. The dynamic trajectory of improvement has undermined the cultural order and isolated the modern subject. The characters are sectioned off into incompatible groupings that fail in isolation, whether divided along regional or ideological lines, or as incompatible individuals within the family. This situation is nicely summarized in Watty Walkinshaw's picture of the last man eating a solitary meal: "for ye ken if a' the folk in the world were to die but only ae man, it would behove that man to hae his dinner" (147).

In The Entail Galt's self-conscious meditations upon plot become more openly conflicted. Claud's self-defeating hereditary project is only the most obvious example in a text that explores contrasting epistemological systems by way of opposing narrative modes, introducing a pattern of "romance" fatality that inverts what Duncan calls the "modality of contingency and accident" that we recognize from Annals. An alternative, wilful form of "story" escalates to counterpoint the Newtonian evolution of society (which we have seen can itself collapse into an overarching narrative of improvement). While this alternative mode is immediately signaled by the simmering allegorical matrix of national imagery, it is principally signified by the entail itself, which "works itself out in a systematic, overdetermined contradiction of human agency." (44) In a sense, then, Claud is born into a claustrophobic symbolic framework that he both perpetuates and corrupts. He helps to set the stage for the text's epistemological conflict with his early neglect of Maudge, an act that resonates throughout the novel. There is a fatal misreading in his behavior, neglecting the real, personified (and thus negotiable) bearer of residual culture as romance for an abstracted, destructive ideal of the same. While rejecting William Wallace for the economic and social ascendancy myth of Dick Whittington appears to signal indifference to romantic ideas of Scottish nationhood, the text resolves Claud's status obsession into the most intransigent kind of national idealism, an inflexible grand narrative that imbibes the charged feudal romance of Whittington's archetypal rise. Fixating on a hollowed-out version of his cultural inheritance, he misses the human, sympathetic element that could have sutured the national condition, inviting in a dark version of Scottishness that haunts the text thenceforth. In ideological terms, he steps beyond the critical paradigm of theoretical history in engaging with the substance of romance at all, but the situation is rendered truly ruinous by the impersonal, debased version that Claud brings to the narrative, permanently souring the unfolding of historical detail. Thus, while Balwhidder's flexible and sympathetic imposition of "story" via his religion proves a harmless superfluity in modern Scotland, Claud's invocation of a static and iconic form of imagined nationhood brings catastrophic results for the nation as family.

The substance of Galt's literary project cannot tolerate Claud's abstract, feudal ideal, and the damaged version of theoretical history produced is a dangerous terrain for all concerned. The shadow of narrativity in the conjectural form is expanded into an aggressive force. Thus in the novel characters are killed off by the impact of important revelations, the workings of "story" resurfacing as a malevolent influence. Notably susceptible is a character like Charles Walkinshaw, who displays a "romantic" inability (expressed in acute emotional sensitivity) to engage in the commercializing bourgeois society that puts him at odds with the world (125-42). Ultimately, extreme flexibility is required to navigate this deformed modernizing trajectory, apparent in a character like the Leddy, whose infinite capriciousness allows her to maintain "a firmer grip on mundane reality." (45) Yet while the Leddy moves effortlessly within the narrative--protected by the elastic fabric of theoretical history--Claud and Charles Walkinshaw are suffocated by a tragic modality that is owed to the destructive feudal revival, so that Claud "suffers tragically in an essentially comic world." (46) Indeed, the sporadic incursions of a visible narrative presence--using a direct address to the reader--seem to figure the text's intermittent disruption of the theoretical historical form, scything across its generational unfolding of national history with a jolt of the fictive (see 99). Galt cleverly emphasizes the profoundly literary bent to these epistemological concerns throughout, seen for example in Lady Plealand's inability to read her psalm-book on Charles's death, the performances of literature (whether reading or writing) inextricably involved in the text's core consideration of "story" and history (142).

The alternative romance mode percolating through the novel erupts in the third volume, the part that has traditionally tended to baffle or disappoint critics. (47) The suppressed family line stemming from Charles--linking together Jacobitism, Highlandism and emotional susceptibility--comes into closer focus as the narrative leaves Glasgow and travels north. Mrs Eadie's comedic yet accurate oracular predictions play upon the incursion of the alternative modality, as the increased prominence of the "romantic" branch of the family seems to impose its own narrative forms (340-41). Claud's inappropriate process of national idealization seems at once parodied and brought to dubious fruition, the text removing into a Highland landscape saturated with the trope-heavy material of romance. Eadie's observation that her second-sight "gift" stands in contrast to the rational, material world is cogent. She explains that "it comes not to us till earthly things begin to lose their hold on our affections," signaling the persistence of residual Scottishness as fundamentally antithetical to life in the modernizing world and maintaining the text's fatal dichotomies (283). Indeed the idea of "Second Sight" is mentioned by Peter Womack as a recurrent formula for such oppositions, a (particularly Hebridean) tradition contributing to the Highlands' suitability "as a refuge from the tyranny of the evidential." (48) Paralleling Claud's attempted imposition of "will" (in both senses of the word), Mrs Eadie's Second Sight is equally rendered so anachronistic as to require death, another strain in the fruitless concoction of Scottishness as romance. Firmly establishing the territory of a romanticized, aesthetic national subjectivity in this sequence, Galt explores the darker potential to such a space: a fatal severance from or debasement of reality, rather than imaginative addendum. Yet if the faulty ideological archaism of both Mrs Eadie and Claud are targets of Galt's critique, we must remember that this is only a fraction of his larger, pessimistic analysis of Scotland's improving trajectory. Nostalgia, greed, and haplessness have come to dominate a society failing to resolve a sense of itself against processes of rapid change, gravely disempowered by the effects of macroscopic historical narratives.

As the third volume's modal deviation draws to a close, the comment upon the national chronicle is fairly ambiguous, eddying amongst sneering parody and settled comic resolution. James's final inheritance may be designated as a suturing union--recombining the dissonant ideological formations of the text's fragmented national portrait--yet the vigorous irony in the final section renders this suspect. The narrative closes with the Leddy's ultimate interference via the outcome of her will, that textual device a closing, correcting likeness of the entail itself (362-63). The Leddy's ideological triumph, then, apparently counters the text's fatality as experienced by Claud and others, in which "human power [is] set at nought by the natural course of things" (115). In one sense, The Entail finally attains the coherence its world has so lacked, allowing for the marriage of residual culture to the modern commercial framework. Yet the imbrication of the final inheritance plot within the problematized, even ridiculed Highland narrative--not to mention its entanglement within Galt's chronic distrust of "story"--makes us wonder whether this should be felt as a resolution of the national-ethical quandary or merely a perpetuation of the problematic. For Juliet Shields, the novel achieves "the reconciliation of past and present and the synthesis of heroic sentiment with commercial interest" through the agency of key female characters (Mrs Eadie and the Leddy) working either outside or against a misfiring patriarchy. While this stress on a gendered element to the conflicts of the text is expedient, Shields's assertion that Galt seeks to "revive the heroic virtues and ardent sensibility associated with Jacobitism" seems part of a questionable optimism regarding the novel's outcome. (49) The Entail's potent cynicism threatens to render such sentimental recuperation distinctly absurd and it appears insufficient to address the text's deep cultural crisis. If Scott's writing is a nagging presence, then the novel seems partly engaged in a vicious critique of his aesthetic reconstruction of national identity. Building on the earlier distrust of "romance revivalism, " the hollow affixing of residual color to the present reveals itself as a devastating miscalculation, one that can only exacerbate an already lopsided ideological landscape. Far from cleanly resolving itself, the disparate experiences of the text have established the terms of an ideological incongruity that is undermining the nation, rendering an unattractive ethical flexibility crucial to its navigation.

In fact, The Entail leaves us with the overpowering sense that Scottishness has become (if it was not always) a deformed and macabre construct. The faulty "imagined communities" of Claud's ancestor worship or Watty's unsettling reinventions of his dead wife, paint a dark figuration of the nation-state in which central processes of death and remembrance have become warped, and sympathetic ties have given way to a haunting social presence (114-17, 167). (50) Bardsley argues that "The Entail develops the theme of a reciprocal inadequacy between categories and their exemplary instance and the bearing of that philosophical problem on the constitution of collectivities." (51) Certainly Galt's text appears suspicious of the act of figuration that it takes as one of its most prominent themes, as example and idea fissure and collapse. Yet this critique is crucially located within the knotty historical context the novel paints for its national subject. Transported across the rapidly improving landscape of the long eighteenth century, Scottishness seems to have become all too disjointed; so incoherent, in fact, that its very imagining is now plagued by delusions and hauntings. Partly a (somewhat reductive) pastiche of Scott, The Entail's rich and varied engagement with issues of national identity compulsively denies any simple process of literary national remediation. As James enlists Highland troops to fight Napoleon en route to the "just" inheritance of the Kittlestonheugh estates, Galt may well be laughing in the face of such mythic ideological processes (340). The enthusiastic appropriation of a Highland Scottishness for the imperial project is revealed as a farcical and bewildering scheme. Instead, Galt's most ambitious theoretical history refuses to produce any answers. Prefiguring Marx's insight into the unrelenting and ominous great plot of bourgeois commercialism, Galt presents this as only one of a series of miscarrying historical narratives in contemporary Scotland. (52) Tracing the impact of a new, global imperial milieu upon an already complex and flawed culture, he produces one of the most pessimistic and relevant novels of the period. An appropriate emblem for Galt's importance to Scottish Romanticism understood via its relationship to the thorny, dialectical history of improvement, The Entail speaks to much broader narratives of "progress" with a salutary intelligence.

University of Glasgow, Scotland


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(1.) John Galt, The Email; or, The Lairds of Grippy, ed. Ian A. Gordon (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1984), 12, 147-48. Subsequent citations to this work appear in the text.

(2.) See N. T. Phillipson and Rosalind Mitchison, eds., Scotland in the Age of Improvement: Essays in Scottish History in the Eighteenth Century (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1970).

(3.) John Galt, Annals of the Parish, in Annals of the Parish & The Ayrshire Legatees (London: Macmillan, 1895; rpt. Edinburgh: Mercat, 1994). Subsequent citations to this work appear in the text.

(4.) See Berry, The Idea of Commercial Society in the Scottish Enlightenment (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2013), in particular 1-29.

(5.) Adam Smith is considered to be the source of the important four-stage version of this stadial approach to history. See Lectures on Jurisprudence, ed. R. L. Meek, D. D. Raphael and P. G. Stein (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1978). For more on the relationship between progress and commerce via improvement, see Peter Womack, Improvement and Romance: Constructing the Myth of the Highlands (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1989), 3, and Raymond Williams, Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, rev. ed. (London: Flamingo, 1983), 160-61.

(6.) See Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society, ed. Fania Oz-Salzberger (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995).

(7.) Regina Hewitt, introduction to John Galt: Observations and Conjectures on Literature, History, and Society, ed. Regina Hewitt (Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press, 2012), 2-8.

(8.) Williams, Marxism and Literature (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1977), 122. For more on Williams's theory of culture, see his Culture and Society, 1780-1950 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1958).

(9.) Williams, Marxism and Literature, 122.

(10.) The momentum in the field is neatly captured in Murray Pittock, ed., The Edinburgh Companion to Scottish Romanticism (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2011). Recent years have seen a number of groundbreaking monographs that negotiate a formation of Scottish Romanticism, notably: Ian Duncan, Scott's Shadow: The Novel in Romantic Edinburgh (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007), and Murray Pittock, Scottish and Irish Romanticism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008).

(11.) See Makdisi, Romantic Imperialism: Universal Empire and the Culture of Modernity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 6-7.

(12.) See also Katie Trumpener, Bardic Nationalism: The Romantic Novel and the British Empire (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1997), 152.

(13.) The debt is illustrated by P. H. Scott in John Galt (Edinburgh: Scottish Academic Press, 1985), 36.

(14.) John Galt, The Autobiography of John Galt, 2 vols. (London: Cochrane and McCrone, 1833), 2:219. Subsequent citations to this work appear in the text.

(15.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 217.

(16.) Duncan discusses Galt's relationship with the periodical press in some depth in "Altered States: Galt, Serial Fiction, and the Romantic Miscellany," in Hewitt, John Galt: Observations and Conjectures, 53-63; while an expansive history of the author's dealings with Blackwood's can be found in the same volume by Robert Morrison, "John Galt's Angular Magazinity," 257-73.

(17.) Relevant here is the first Account, commonly known as Sinclair's Old Statistical Account. See The Statistical Account of Scotland: Drawn Up From the Communication of the Ministers of the Different Parishes, ed. Sir John Sinclair, 21 vols. (Edinburgh: Creech, 1791-1799).

(18.) For more on the relationship of Galt's writings to the improving projects of statistical accounts (focusing on how this is crystallized around his colonial endeavors in Canada), see Kenneth McNeil, "Time, Emigration, and the Circum-Atlantic World: John Galt's Bogle Corbet," in Hewitt, John Galt: Observations and Conjectures, 303-8.

(19.) See Ian A. Gordon, "Galt and Politics," in John Galt: Reappraisals, ed. Elizabeth Waterson (Guelph: Ampersand, 1985), 120-21.

(20.) Martha Bohrer, "John Galt's Annals of the Parish and the Narrative Strategies of Tales of Locale," in Hewitt, John Galt: Observations and Conjectures, 106-13.

(21.) Trumpener remarks of The Provost that Galt shows "how the machinery of change, once put into operation, camouflages [human] agency as the movement of history" (Bardic Nationalism, 156). See John Galt, The Provost, ed. Ian A. Gordon (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982).

(22.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 227.

(23.) Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, ed. R. H. Campbell and A. S. Skinner, 2 vols. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1976), 2:781-88.

(24.) P. H. Scott, John Galt, 28.

(25.) Bohrer, "John Galt's Annals," 101.

(26.) Lyell, A Study of the Novels of John Galt (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1942), 50.

(27.) Bohrer, "John Galt's Annals," 114.

(28.) McCracken-Flesher, "The Sense of No Ending: John Galt and the Travels of Commoners and Kings in 'The Steam-Boat' and 'The Gathering of the West,'" in Hewitt, John Galt: Observations and Conjectures, 74.

(29.) Duncan, "Altered States," 55, 61-62.

(30.) Morrison, "John Galt's Angular Magazinity," 268.

(31.) Bohrer, "John Galt's Annals," 105-6.

(32.) Steven, Parish Life in Eighteenth-Century Scotland: A Review of the Old Statistical Account (Aberdeen: Scottish Cultural Press, 1995), 165.

(33.) See also Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 226.

(34.) Wickman, "Of Tangled Webs and Busted Sets: Tropologies of Number and Shape in the Fiction of John Galt," Romantic Circles: Praxis Series (April 2013): paras. 1-10 of 14, http://romantic.arhu.umd.edu/praxis/numbers/HTML/praxis.2013.wickman.html, accessed 2} November 2014.

(35.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 223.

(36.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 228-30.

(37.) Bardsley, "Novel and Nation Come to Grief: The Dead's Part in John Galt's The Entail," Modern Philology 99 (2002): 540.

(38.) Mark Schoenfield, "Family Plots: Land and Law in John Galt's The Entail," Scottish Literary Journal 24 (1997): 62-63.

(39.) Smith, Wealth of Nations, 1:384-85.

(40.) Schoenfield, "Family Plots," 62.

(41.) Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments, ed. Knud Haakonssen (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002).

(42.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 238-39.

(43.) Simmons, "'Feudal Days': John Galt's Ambivalent Medievalism," in Hewitt, John Galt: Observations and Conjectures, 181.

(44.) Duncan, Scott's Shadow, 239-40.

(45.) Keith M. Costain, "Mind-Forg'd Manacles: The Entail as Romantic Tragicomedy," in John Galt 1779-1979, ed. Christopher A. Whatley (Edinburgh: The Ramsay Head Press, 1979), 184.

(46.) Costain, "Mind-Forg'd Manacles," 169.

(47.) Eric Frykman, for example, complains of "concessions to popular taste" in the heightening of melodramatic and supernatural elements, suggesting Galt is attempting to cash in on Scott's popularity. See his John Gall's Scottish Stories: 1820-1823 (Uppsala: Lundequistska Bokhandeln, 1959), 137, 158.

(48.) Womack, Improvement and Romance, 89-94.

(49.) Shields, Sentimental Literature and Anglo-Scottish Identity, 1745-1820 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 160-65.

(50.) Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, 2nd ed. (London: Verso, 1991).

(51.) Bardsley, "Novel and Nation," 562.

(52.) See Marshall Berman, "Tearing Away the Veils: The Communist Manifesto," Dissent: A Quarterly of Politics and Culture (6 May 2011): para. 9 of 27, http://www.dissentmagazine .org/online_articles/tearing-away-the-veils-the-communist-manifesto, accessed 25 November 2014.

Source Citation

Source Citation   (MLA 8th Edition)
McKeever, Gerard Lee. "'With wealth come wants': Scottish Romanticism as improvement in the Fiction of John Galt." Studies in Romanticism, vol. 55, no. 1, 2016, p. 69+. Gale Academic OneFile Select, https%3A%2F%2Flink.gale.com%2Fapps%2Fdoc%2FA454362020%2FEAIM%3Fu%3Dglasuni%26sid%3DEAIM%26xid%3Dd7bcabad. Accessed 20 Sept. 2019.

Gale Document Number: GALE|A454362020