Wed 6 Aug 2014 – The Braveheart Myth

Sailors Fighting In The Dancehall

The Braveheart Myth


With Linda McLean, Kieran Hurley, Jenny Lindsay, Fiona Watson, Alan Bissett, Rachael Clerke, Seafieldroad.

Yep. We really did go there: we talked about Braveheart

Whether Braveheart makes you wince, weep, rejoice or want to explore yer clan history, it is the indyref film that just never goes away. So, Kieran Hurley and myself hosted a lively panel discussion with Rachael Clerke, Linda McLean, Fiona Watson and Alan Bissett, aiming to unearth why this is.

Following a great provocation by Linda, the panel opened with discussion on the Braveheart myth and masculinity in Scottish culture, before widening out to explore the importance of seeing Scotland on film, and whether it is a lack of Scottish representation in film in general that makes Braveheart such a ubiquitous cultural reference point for yes and no voters alike.

An interesting, wide-ranging discussion concluded with the audience assisting in the creation of a performance poem, writing one sentence each, beginning with the words “Braveheart Is…”. Much hilarity ensued. We finished up with a song from Seafieldroad, with the reminder that “This Road Won’t Build Itself“. True that – and if our discussion unearthed anything conclusive about the Braveheart myth, it’s that there are many factors building our definitions of ‘Scottishness’ too.

Jenny Lindsay