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His name, image and influence can be seen everywhere; from Scottish banknotes to place names across the globe. Sir Walter Scott invented the modern novel, began Scotland's tourist industry and was the first celebrity author - a heady mix of JK Rowling and Dan Brown long before the age of mass media hype. Lauded by contemporary critics as well as his massive readership in the 19th century, he's hardly read - and even more rarely enjoyed - today.

Stuart Kelly considers the backlash which hit Scott's work after the prolific author's death. Although his critical reputation would never recover, the images of Scotland which Walter Scott created - the romantic landscapes populated by isolated, kilted natives - haunt Scotland to this day.

Stuart Kelly was born and brought up in the Scottish Borders. He studied English at Oxford and is the Literary Editor of Scotland on Sunday.

Reader: Robin Laing
Abridger: Laurence Wareing
Producer: Eilidh McCreadie.

15 minutes

Last on

Sat 21 Aug 2010 00:30

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