Chapter 2 – People

I am actually onto my third analysis chapter now, but here is an old post about the second analysis chapter…oh how time flies!

Hello!

The sun is positively BEATING down here in Glasgow, ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ is blasting from the building site, and memories of loch swimming and 6Music Festival gigs are only recently fogging in my mind’s eye from the weekend…

It’s been a while since I’ve written and my brain is a little fuzzy today (turns out your natural alarm clock isn’t always the best thing to rely on…) so rather than wake up and ‘carry on writing my PhD’ I thought I’d have a bit  of free-writing-esque on this here blog, let you know where I’m at, that sort of thing.

Trifling exclusions / to be ‘of’ somewhere

As I walk further down the track of this PhD through the dense woods of thoughts, theories and conversations, I have moved away from believing that although, yes, there should be some element of the researcher’s own experiences in the work (particularly in Anthropology), that it shouldn’t ring out a clear bias, presenting the data in one way or another, to quite a different ideology (this post is a bit of a stream of consciousness, so you’ll apparently have to wait until the end before I tell you what this ideology is-! Apologies on behalf of consciousness-streaming Ruth). As I have begun to research what I have identified as mainstream heritage representations in the city of Glasgow, I am increasingly frustrated by voices which are routinely excluded in these various mainstream places (museums, city marketing etc) which supposedly claim that they are telling ‘the’ story of ‘the’ people ‘of Glagsow’.

The city has a Black and Minority Ethnic population of around 12%, many of whom were born in the city and many of whom, I am sure, would say they feel they are ‘of’ Glasgow, and yet those voices are much quieter in mainstream representations of Glasgow’s heritage than the ‘indigenous’ white population (I’m obviously not saying their being ‘of’ the city is invalid by any means, although we are all immigrants at some point down the line…simply that the imbalance should be addressed).

Speaking from my own experience; my parents are from Birmingham. I was born in Bradford, West Yorkshire. As I have got older and moved away from my hometown and childhood home, my sense of being ‘of’ Bradford, or certainly Yorkshire, has strengthened, grown and those roots have dug themselves in deeper each year, and with every new person that I say should go to Yorkshire, and every time someone correctly identifies me as Northern (or incorrectly identifies me as Southern…). I’ve written a song about it and everything, called ‘home’.

‘This soaring, roaring wild land will always call me back up”

A Scattering of Seeds

So I’m here.

Officially a resident of Glasgow. I’m not sure I entirely fit into the category of ‘New Glaswegian’ – a term that one of the people I met with in June used when talking about people who moved from outside of the UK to Glasgow. I like that.

It’s been a pretty mad week of trying to settle a little better into my nest. I love my flat, I’ve just been a little overfaced with the fact that I’ve just moved to a new – massive – city from what is a relatively small one. I’m feeling a lot better now, partly because of something that happened the other night…

“what happened the other night, Ruth?”

Well, dear reader, let me relay the tale.