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Posts Tagged ‘Scotland’

Guga Hunting – A Non-Contaminated Tradition

Written by Neil Gow on . Posted in food

guga hunt, traditional hunting, guga hunters

Flandrin and Montanari assert, Every culture is contaminated; every tradition is a child of history, and history is never static. Looking at this from a present day semantic perspective this would appear to hold true.

Todays current events become tomorrows historical ones. From a global perspective the statistical probability that what occurred today will repeat itself tomorrow, a veritable ground hog day, is so small that the assertion history is never static can be made with a high degree of assurance. By defining tradition as the passing of elements of a culture or religious beliefs from generation to generation, especially by oral communication, a case can be made for the parental role of history in the formulation and nurturing of a cultures traditions.

Assuming that not all contamination is malicious, the current level of globalisation and social interconnectedness has driven the possibility of culture isolation to the furthest extremes of the Amazonian rain forest or Papua New Guinean highlands. Given this assertion that nothing realistically can be fixed or unchanging, we need to accept culture and tradition as a moveable element, à la Flandrin and Montanari, dynamic and open to contestation.

Haggis – Peasant Food to Diasporic Icon

Written by Neil Gow on . Posted in food

what is haggis, haggis recipe, haggis food

When the common question of country and food association is raised and the country in question is Scotland, two foods typically spring to mind – porridge and haggis. While these two foods converge at one end of the food spectrum, in that oats (in the form of pin-head oatmeal) are a primary constituent of Haggis; at the other they have diverged to a significant degree.

Ann Hope succinctly describes this divergence in Caledonian Feast – “Strange that, while porridge was easily accepted throughout the British Empire – some would say it as an integral part – haggis remains a curiosity outside of Scotland, an unfamiliar object which calls forth defensive ribaldry in its own country”

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