The Scottish Parliament
'There shall be a Scottish parliament. I like that.'
(The late Donald Dewar, Scotland's First Minister, 1997)
With these words, the 'settled will of the Scottish people' was expressed for a devolved parliament for Scotland. We present here a list of books on the politics, the people, and that building.
The Scottish Parliament (the institution, not the present building) officially opened for business on 1 July 1999, meeting for the first time in 300 years. Donald Dewar, the Glasgow Labour MSP for Anniesland, had been elected First Minister in the first elections held on 6 May of that year and David Steel of the Lib-Dems was voted Presiding Officer. The first sessions were held in the Church of Scotland's Assembly Halls on the Mound in Edinburgh that same month and one of the items for debate was the question of whether a new parliament building was required. It was. The final site of Holyrood at the foot of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh was chosen with two architect firms, EMBT of Barcelona and RMJM of Edinburgh, being awarded the design contract. The building was opened on 9 October 2004 after a stormy period of budgetary revisions, hold-ups, public reviews, and intense debate in the media.
The Scottish Parliament consists of 129 elected representatives, known as Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs), and has the power to pass legislation and alter the rate of tax. Devolved powers include education, health and prisons whilst other areas of decision-making, called Reserved Powers, are dealt with at Westminster. (Don't get us started on the West Lothian Question...)
- Add to BasketHolyrood: The Inside Story - - Paperback
Powerful, thought-provoking and thoroughly researched, this book explores in great depth the story of Holyrood itself: the first years of devolution and the nature of modern Scotland - stories for which the Holyrood building has become a potent and revealing metaphor.
- Add to BasketThe Road To The Scottish Parliament - - Paperback
First published in 1999, this revised and updated guide to the establishment of Scotland's Parliament follows the road to devolution - with fresh detail of the obstacles which stood in the way. The author offers an analysis of the background to this monumental political change.
- Add to BasketA Scots Parliament - - Paperback
This is a comprehensive introduction to the Scottish Parliament, both past and present, written in accessible, straightforward modern Scots.
- Add to BasketVoyage Of Intent: Sonnets And Essays From The Scottish Parliament - - Paperback
Here are 11 sonnets and three essays written by James Robertson. They create snapshots of the Scottish Parliament and the people working and living in and around it, and convey the historical relationship between Scottish literature, identity, politics and the Royal Mile as a literary location.
Politics and History titles
It has now reconvened after nearly 300 years. A Devolved Legislature but a Parliament all the same. Unable to address all issues but able to make a difference in many areas. It is for the Scottish Parliament to shape and mould the future of Scotland. But,
- Add to BasketCreating A Scottish Parliament - - Paperback
This book puts the building of Scotland's new parliament in perspective, making use of unique access to documents and materials. It also includes the drawings of the architect, Enric Miralles and photographs of the Holyrood building as well as prints from Edinburgh's past.
- Add to BasketA Diverse Assembly: The Debate On A Scottish Parliament - - Paperback
The 1997 Scottish Referendum confirmed the wish of the Scottish people for their first Parliament in almost 300 years. In this book Paterson draws together a collection of the key arguments for and against the reinstating of a Scottish Parliament.
- Add to BasketHas Devolution Delivered? - Paperback
The editors draw upon a range of Scottish election studies and Scottish social attitudes surveys to explore the early success- or otherwise- of devolution in changing the way people feel about their country and the way they are governed.
- Add to BasketScottish Government And Politics - - Paperback
This work provides a descriptive and analytical introduction to Scottish government and politics. It covers the emergence of the Scottish parliament and its impact on politics and political actors such as the media, political parties and pressure groups.
- Add to BasketScottish Independence: A Practical Guide - - Paperback
This study maps out the route to independence for Scotland and spells out the consequences. Its focus is on the process whereby Scotland might achieve independence and the consequences that would follow for Scotland and the rest of the UK.