Culture Round-up for May
Poetry, films, and a fresh look at how Scotland can flourish
Welcome to The Scots Curator’s monthly round-up, pulling together interesting news, stories and events from across Scottish culture and the arts. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to The Scots Curator to support our work and receive future updates (it’s free!)
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How can Scotland flourish?
Writer and broadcaster Lesley Riddoch has launched her much-anticipated new book Thrive: The Freedom To Flourish. The book is an impassioned call to action, weaving academic evidence with story, international comparison and anecdote to encourage Scots to believe in themselves and ‘dare to dream of better’. As Lesley puts it: ‘Whichever way you voted in 2014 – if you did – the world, Europe, the UK, Ireland and our Nordic neighbours have all changed. Scots need the freedom to change too.’
A film adaptation of Alasdair Gray’s Poor Things
From filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos and producer Emma Stone comes the incredible tale of Bella Baxter, a young woman brought back to life by the unorthodox scientist Dr Godwin Baxter. The film is based on Alasdair Gray’s 1992 novel Poor Things, and is due to be released in September 2023.
Glasgow’s annual book festival, Aye Write, is on until 28th of May at the Mitchell Library and Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. Festival events cover a range of cultural themes relating to our times. View the festival programme here.
The MacDiarmid Memorandum
Alan Riach, writer, poet, and Professor of Scottish Literature at the University of Glasgow, has announced his new poetry collection, The MacDiarmid Memorandum. The collection remembers the life of the influential 20th century poet Hugh MacDiarmid. The book is described by the publishers as ‘a work of epic, category-defying scope; blending biography and national history, poetry and prose…’
Riach’s new collection also examines the context of MacDiarmid’s work, placing it within a Scotland which ‘endured two world wars, each triggering a continuing renaissance of Scottish artists and intellectuals, struggling to regenerate international recognition and self-determination.’ The book will launch at the Scottish Poetry Library on the 29th of June.
Scotland’s stone on the move again
The Stone of Destiny, which made an appearance at this month’s Coronation of Charles III, was for many centuries the ancient crowning stone of Scottish kings. But how has it been used by Scotland’s writers, artists and musicians? We delved into its cultural history here on The Scots Curator.