By Michael Michie

ISBN-10: 0773510257

ISBN-13: 9780773510258

An Enlightenment Tory in Victorian Scotland is a political and highbrow biography of Sir Archibald Alison (1792-1867), historian, social critic, felony legal professional, and sheriff of Lanarkshire. the 1st writer to ascertain the complete diversity of Alison's writings and actions, Michael Michie finds an important hyperlink among the Scottish Enlightenment and Victorian conservatism. Michie argues that Alison's conservative rules have been deeply encouraged by way of the social and political considered the Scottish Enlightenment. He contends that Alison was once the embodiment of the excessive Tory appropriation of the legacy of Adam Smith relatively obvious within the trust that advertisement agrarian capitalist society used to be the main acceptable shape for either the upkeep of order and the perform of advantage. constructing the recommendation conservative interpretation of the enlightened legacy used to be attainable for the succeeding century, Michie's learn bargains an invaluable corrective to the bought knowledge that Victorian Liberalism used to be the genuine inheritor of the Scottish Enlightenment.

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Lyon Playfair made a very similar observation in 1889: "The old English universities have not the same function as the Scottish and Irish universities. " Harvie, referring mainly to the second half of the nineteenth century, suggests that "Scottish secondary and higher education didn't always reach its own high claims, but it was, in terms of access and relevance, much superior to the non-system south of the border": Scotland and Nationalism, 47-8. 51. William Alison would have taken courses from the following list: anatomy and surgery, chemistry, medical practice (the three most well-attended courses), medical theory, clinical lectures, midwifery, Materia medica, and botany.

17 A young advocate who had connections to landed property, and who could set out written arguments based on the often tortuous structure of Scottish land law, could flourish before the Court o Session. Cockburn had connections: his father's cousin was Henry Dundas, first Viscount Melville. Unfortunately, he did not shine in written argument, and work ceased to come his way. There were two main alternatives: criminal law or a political appointment. Cockburn chose the latter (apparendy with some desperation, as it was a Tory appointment) .

22. The Rev. Archibald Alison, Sermons, n, sermon xvi, 331. 23. , u, sermon xn, 229-30. 24. , n, sermon x, 197. It may be that Alison was echoing Adam Ferguson here. Kettler ("History and Theory," 443) suggests that Ferguson took exception to what he saw as Smith's exclusive emphasis on the spectator and wished instead to contrast it with the attitude of the actor: "Ferguson takes up Smith's suggestion ... that agents playing some parts may govern themselves by the spectator's point of view. "25 Alison's sermons used categories of expression similar to those found in the devotional literature of the Moderates and in Adam Smith's ethical writings.

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An Enlightenment Tory in Victorian Scotland: The Career of Sir Archibald Alison by Michael Michie


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