Advertisement

Glaswegian and Dundonian: Twa Mither Tongues Representing the Place and Space of Tom Leonard and Mark Thomson

  • Aniela Korzeniowska
Chapter
Part of the Geocriticism and Spatial Literary Studies book series (GSLS)

Abstract

Glasgow-born Tom Leonard and Mark Thomson from Dundee are two contemporary Scottish poets inextricably linked through the use and promotion of their mither tongues with the places—and spaces—they come from. The topic I would like to address here is how first Leonard and then the much younger Thomson have shown, through their own choice of poetic means, the value and significance of one’s language, and the politics surrounding language. Through the use of their urban working-class speech forms, Glaswegian and Dundonian, respectively, we are witness to how they confront linguistic convention concerning the language of power, that is, Standard English. In the case of Leonard, the intellectual and political activist, he also does not shy away from some harsh and thought-provoking attacks on English as the language of the Church, and that of the higher echelons of society. It is through a representative selection of their poems that I would like to examine in more detail the significance of their writing at the time when it was first published as well as its importance today. This is of particular concern when discussing the issue of identity and what makes up our own space and place in this world.

Keywords

Tom Leonard Mark Thomson Glaswegian Dundonian Identity Power 

Works Cited

  1. Brown, Ian, and Colin Nicholson. ‘Arcades—The 1960s and 1970s’. The Edinburgh Companion to Twentieth-Century Scottish Literature. Ed. Ian Brown and Alan Riach. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2011 [2009]. 133–44. Print. Google Scholar
  2. Carruthers, Gerard. Scottish Literature. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009. Print.Google Scholar
  3. Donovan, Anne. Buddha Da. Edinburgh: Canongate, 2004. Print.Google Scholar
  4. Grant, William. ‘Introduction’. Scottish National Dictionary, Vol. 1. Ed. William Grant. Edinburgh: Scottish National Dictionary Association, 1931. Print.Google Scholar
  5. Leonard, Tom, ed. Poetry in the West of Scotland from the French Revolution to the First World War. Edinburgh: Polygon, 1990. Print.Google Scholar
  6. ———. Intimate Voices: Selected Work 1965–1983. London: Vintage, 1995 [1984]. Print.Google Scholar
  7. ———. ‘Literature, Language, Democracy’. Reports from the Present: Selected Work 1982–94. London: Jonathan Cape, 1995. 47–62. Print.Google Scholar
  8. Lochhead, Liz. The Colour of Black and White: Poems 1984–2003. Edinburgh: Polygon, 2003. Print.Google Scholar
  9. Marsack, Robyn. ‘The Seven Poets Generation’. The Edinburgh Companion to Twentieth-Century Scottish Literature. Ed. Ian Brown and Alan Riach. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2011 [2009]. 156–66. Print.Google Scholar
  10. McClure, J. Derrick. Scots and Its Literature. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing, 1995. Print.Google Scholar
  11. ———. Language, Poetry and Nationhood: Scots as a Poetic Language from 1878 to the Present. East Lothian, Scotland: Tuckwell Press, 2000. Print.Google Scholar
  12. McGuire, Matt. Contemporary Scottish Literature. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009. Print.Google Scholar
  13. Mulrine, Stephen. ‘The Coming of the Wee Malkies’. Four Glasgow University Poets. Kirkaldy: Akros Publications, 1967. 10. Print.Google Scholar
  14. Munro, Michael. The Patter: A Guide to Current Glasgow Usage. Glasgow: Glasgow District Libraries, 1985. Print.Google Scholar
  15. ———. The Patter: Another Blast. Edinburgh: Canongate, 1988. Print.Google Scholar
  16. ———. The Complete Patter. Edinburgh: Canongate Books, 1996. Print.Google Scholar
  17. Nicholson, Colin. ‘Nomadic Subjects in Recent Poetry’. The Edinburgh Companion to Contemporary Scottish Poetry. Ed. Matt McGuire and Colin Nicholson. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009. 80–96. Print.Google Scholar
  18. Thomson, Mark. Bard Fae Thi Building Site. Edinburgh: Luath Press, 2007. Print.Google Scholar
  19. ———. Author Details: Biography. 2016. Web. 16 January 2018. http://www.scottishbooktrust.com/profile-author/17137.
  20. Watson, Roderick, ed. The Poetry of Scotland: Gaelic, Scots and English. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1995. Print.Google Scholar
  21. ———. The Literature of Scotland, Vol. 2. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007 [1984]. Print.Google Scholar
  22. Wood, Barry. ‘Scots, Poets and the City’. The History of Scottish Literature, Vol. 4. Ed. Cairns Craig. Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press, 1987. 337–48. Print.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aniela Korzeniowska
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WarsawWarszawaPoland

Personalised recommendations