| CUSTOM AND CONFLICT IN 'THE LAND OF THE GAEL'|
by Neville Kirk
Between 1902 and 1905 the remote Scottish Highland community of Ballachulish, near Glencoe, was shaken to its foundations by protracted and bitter conflicts: a twelve month quarry lock-out and a dispute over the employment of Lachlan Grant, a doctor supported by the community.
Conflicts between the quarrymen and the local community and the Slate Quarry employers concerned issues of wages, working and living conditions, but were much wider and broader. They involved a spectrum of social and economic concerns, a remarkable willingness to fight for principles and 'rights', for influence over decisions affecting the welfare of neighbours, friends and co-workers.
Labour Leader, wrote that the events were "unique". "For, here was a body of men living in a remote part of the country, living under conditions and traditions such as usually foster an instinctive deference to the powers that be.." Yet they achieved recognition for a union of the 'new' type embracing all grades of quarrymen.
Kirk unearths events that have barely figured in recent published records. He highlights a range of experiences and loyalties: chapter one examines the features of the community and workplace; the second chapter looks at their nature and chronology, the third explains the successes, failures and compromises and explores the wider historical and historiographical significance, and the fourth considers ways in which the actions and beliefs carry implications for the wider study of modern social protest movements. This study will appeal to readers with an interest in Social, Labour and Scottish history, and to students across the humanities and social sciences.
2007 200 pages approx. Hardback