Literary influences

Two main strands are important to Sunset Song, the novels of the so-called 'Kailyard School' and another single novel, The House with the Green Shutters, by George Douglas Brown.

Grassic Gibbon acknowledges this twice in the novel. At the end of the Prelude, which places Kinraddie in its historical and social perspective, he sums up by saying:

So that was Kinraddie that bleak winter of nineteen eleven and the new minister, him they chose early next year, he was to say it was the Scots countryside itself, fathered between a kailyard and a bonny brier bush in the lee of a house with green shutters." (The Unfurrowed Field)

This is echoed in the account of the minister making a drunken exhibition of himself after celebrating the birth of his daughter.

After falling down the steps of the railway bridge, the Reverend Gibbon broke down and sobbed on the porter's shoulder what a bloody place was Kinraddie! And how'd the porter like to live 'tween a brier bush and a rotten kailyard in the lee of a house with green shutters?