Locality, Nation, and Empire

Andrew Mackillop

in Scotland and the British Empire

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199573240
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731310 | DOI:

Series: Oxford History of the British Empire Companion Series

Locality, Nation, and Empire

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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The participation of Scots in the commercial and territorial empire of the English East India Company over the course of the long eighteenth century remains one of the most understudied aspects of the wider Scottish role in the British Empire. This chapter surveys the latest research on the numbers, social origins and identities of Scots in Asia, while reflecting on the benefits and limitations of adopting a particular Scottish perspective on British expansion in Asia. It emphasises the central role of London-based patronage and local networks in securing places for a regionally and socially diverse range of Scots, who in turn maintained discernibly Scottish identities while in Asia. It concludes that a closer engagement between Scottish evidence and more general debates on the nature of pre-1815 British imperialism can be mutually beneficial for both Scottish History and British Imperial Studies.

Keywords: Scots; Scotland; English East India Company; Asia; sojourners; New Imperial History

Chapter.  12264 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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