Plot in depth

The Stag

A stag

The play moves on in time to the mid-nineteenth century and the exploitative motives of the Victorian landed gentry who bought up huge swathes of the countryside for their own leisure pursuit of hunting. In this section we note the beginnings of the Highland tourist industry.

During the Clearances, men were not around to resist as they were away in the Army.

A section featuring the 3rd Duke of Sutherland suggests that Highlanders refused to join up to support a British establishment that exploited them and treated them badly. A war memorial is shown to represent Highlanders who died in wars while serving the British Empire.

The examination of Victorian tourism is neatly juxtaposed with a segment on the modern Highland tourist industry and investors’ attempts to capitalise on the region’s natural beauty.

A Gaelic song is sung to introduce how Gaelic language and culture has been suppressed.

Factual information is presented to reflect the battles between crofters and landowners for rights to parts of the Highlands.

The play states that economic power is now the main force controlling the land. Power is held by a small number of families and, increasingly, by businesses and individuals with no connection to the land.