Friday Jul 02, 2021

Episode 65 - Rise! Rise! Lowland and Highland men: The Jacobites with Prof. Murray Pittock

I have been haunted by the story of the Scottish Jacobites. Even 300 years later their history feels unresolved. Today I spoke with one of the leading experts on Jacobite history, Prof. Murray Pittock to learn how the uprisings came about and how they turned the course of global history.

Prof. Pittock's Book:  Culloden (Great Battles)


Murray Pittock (MA D.Litt. Glasgow; D.Phil Oxford)is Bradley Professor and Pro Vice-Principal. He has worked at the universities of Manchester (where he was the first professor of Scottish literature at an English university), Edinburgh, Oxford, Aberdeen and Strathclyde, and has held visiting appointments at the Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies (2002), New York University (Visiting Professor of English, 2015); Charles University, Prague (Ministry of Education Visiting Professor in Languages, 2010), Trinity College, Dublin (Visiting Professor in English and History, 2008), Auburn (History and Equality and Diversity, 2006), Notre Dame (NEH seminar visiting scholar in Irish Studies, 2014), USC (Roy Lecturer in Scottish Studies, 2015) and Yale (Senior Warnock Fellow, 1998 and 2000-1). Murray is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the English Association, the Royal Historical Society, the Royal Society of Arts and the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland among other bodies, and an honorary Fellow of the Association for Scottish Literary Studies. Murray's books are set on courses in English, History, Irish Studies, theology and politics in around twenty-five countries, and he has been awarded or shortlisted/nominated for a number of literary and historical prizes and prize lectureships. He is one of the few UK academics to be a prize lecturer of both the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the British Academy, and has acted as an external assessor for chairs and grants from the Ivy League to the Middle East. Murray is Scottish History Adviser to the National Trust for Scotland, has acted as adviser to the National Galleries and has held grants in English, History, Museology, Tourism and the creative economy. In 2014, he became the founding convenor of the International Association for the Study of Scottish Literatures, and remains chair of its Trustees. The 2020 Congress is in Prague:

His most recent books include Enlightenment in a Smart City: Edinburgh’s Civic Development 1660-1750 (supported by AHRC and Royal Society of Edinburgh, 2018); The Scots Musical Museum (supported by AHRC, 2 vols, 2018); Culloden (History Today top 10 titles of the year, House of Commons reading list and Herald book choice, 2016, reprinted 2017); The Reception of Robert Burns in Europe (supported by AHRC, 2014); The Road to Independence? Scotland in the Balance (2014, 1st edition nominated for Orwell Prize, Daily Telegraph referendum reading choice); Material Culture and Sedition (Saltire Research Book of the Year shortlist, 2014); Scottish and Irish Romanticism (supported by AHRC, paperback, 2011); The Edinburgh Companion to Scottish Romanticism (2011); Robert Burns and Global Culture (supported by AHRC, 2011).

Murray has won almost 20 grants to work on cultural and public memory, Jacobitism and the redefining of national Romanticisms. Currently he is PI of the £1M AHRC Ramsay Project

(, the EPSRC-AHRC Immersive Experiences Scottish Heritage Partnership ( and the Scottish Government (Economic Development) contract on Robert Burns and the Scottish Economy.  Murray’s former research students are in posts in the UK, US and SE Asia at levels ranging from research assistant to senior management. Two recent PhDs (Michael Shaw, 2014; Craig Lamont, 2015) won the Roy Medal for the best Scottish Studies thesis of the year in successive years.

Murray has appeared in the UK and overseas media in over 50 countries on some 1500 occasions to comment on history, literature and current affairs, including scripting and presenting radio series ( The Roots of Scottish Nationalism -Radio 4, 6.25M aggregate audience, 81% UK wide approval rating) and has co-curated a number of exhibitions. He regularly acts as a consultant to national institutions. Murray supervises PhDs in the areas of Burns, Cultural History, Irish Studies, Jacobitism, Romanticism, Scott, Scottish Studies and other fields.

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