My new book, ‘Scottish Dance Beyond 1805: Reaction and Regulation’, was published by Routledge in December 2019.
Scottish Dance Beyond 1805 presents a history of Scottish music and dance over the last 200 years, with a focus on sources originating in Aberdeenshire, when steps could be adapted in any way the dancer pleased. The book explains the major changes in the way that dance was taught and performed by chronicling the shift from individual dancing masters to professional, licensed members of regulatory societies. This ethnographical study assesses how dances such as the Highland Fling have been altered and how standardisation has affected contemporary Highland dance and music, by examining the experience of dancers and pipers. It considers reactions to regulation and standardisation through the introduction to Scotland of percussive step dance and caller-facilitated ceilidh dancing.