Hunting Captain Henley

Pratt, Ken (2009) Hunting Captain Henley. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

Full text available as:
[thumbnail of 2008prattphd.pdf] PDF
Download (2MB)
Printed Thesis Information:


The term post traumatic stress is routinely used to describe the psychological experiences of soldiers returning from war. It is used here to describe the effects it has on the families of PTS victims, in particular children.

Hunting Captain Henley is a novel which explores the long term effects of a father’s post traumatic stress on a son’s (intellectual) development. It tracks the progress of the narrator from childhood to adulthood as he sets about tracking down the (English) Royal Signals Captain who allegedly bullied his dad into shooting Arab civilians during the Ismaelia police
uprising at Suez in 1951. In his 1919 book Scottish Literature: Character and Influence G. Gregory Smith first coined the phrase Caledonian Antisyzygy to spotlight the zigzag of contradictions at the heart of Scottish Literature, especially under the stress of foreign (in particular English) influence. The term has since been used to point at the schizophrenia at the heart of Scottishness. The novel considers the dual influences of the English (language) on Scottish writing and families.

As a prologue to the book a commentary is provided. Scotland’s Fascist Voice addresses the unexplored area of the present-day fascist consciousness in Scotland. It does so by firstly acknowledging Scotland’s role in the creation of the British Empire then delineates a developing contemporary identity borne out of that imperial experience. It examines the significance of The Raucle Tongue, hitherto uncollected prose by Hugh MacDiarmid, in particular his Plea for a Scottish Fascism. The remaining chapters of the commentary explain the significance of a form of cultural repression at work in Scottish society and showcase the fascist style mindset and its incumbent voice. It is concluded that as both victims and perpetators of Empire Scots must now acknowledge this duality of experience and carry forth its impact on both our language and identity into the 21st century.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Scotland's, Fascist, Voice, Hunting, Captain, Henley, Novel
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > Scottish Literature
Supervisor's Name: Maley, Professor Willy and Riach, Professor Alan
Date of Award: 2009
Depositing User: Dr. Ken Pratt
Unique ID: glathesis:2009-607
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2009
Last Modified: 19 Apr 2023 14:06

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year