9.6 What I have learned

The different histories of the use of Scots language in drama, television and film highlight the importance of cultural context, economic and industrial structures, thematic content and likely audience in affecting the extent to which Scots language is employed in dialogue.

In assessing the prevalence of the use of Scots, it is important to recognise that it is not only cultural matters, narrowly defined as artistic considerations, that have an impact. It is important to understand that in a broader definition of the word ‘culture’ politics, economics, ethics and industrial organisations as well as values express and shape the broader social values that go to make up any given culture.

Given this, the place of Scots language in drama, television and film is affected not only by the nature of Scots as a language, but the perceptions of writers, directors, and producers, not to mention the audience, of the role of Scotland, its language and artistic culture within that larger definition of culture, not to mention the framework of the specific production culture of each of the art forms of theatre, television and film.

The final activity of this section is designed to help you review, consolidate and reflect on what you have learned in this unit. You will revisit the key learning points of the unit and the initial thoughts you noted down before commencing your study of it.

Activity 13

Before finishing your work on this unit, please revisit what you worked on in Activity 1, where we asked you to take some notes on what you already knew in relation to the key learning points of the unit.

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Compare your notes from before you studied this unit with what you have learned here and add to these notes as you see fit to produce a record of your learning.

Here are the key learning points again for you as a reminder:

  • The history of Scots as a stage language from the 16th century onwards

  • Scots language drama over the 20th century

  • Developments in the use of Scots in television drama

  • Scots language in film

  • Underlying issues affecting the use of Scots in dramatic performance-writing

Further research