History of the Scottish and welsh independence movements: comparison and analysis

Valerii Pavlenko

PhD in History, Professor

Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Kyiv, Ukraine

Mykola Polovin

Master’s Student

Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Kyiv, Ukraine

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17721/2524-048X.2021.18.12

Abstract. The article addresses the history of the Scottish and Welsh approaches towards nationalism within the United Kingdom and features inherent in them. Similarities and differences between the Scottish and Welsh independence movements have been shown. Analysis of historical underpinnings of the creation of the Scottish National Party and the Party of Wales has been conducted. Influence of the Scottish and Welsh nationalism’s unique characteristics on the parties’ electoral performance has been analyzed.

  Research on the Scottish and Welsh independence movements from the perspective of Anglo–Scottish and Anglo–Welsh relations has been carried out. Influence of the British colonial empire on the suppression of the nationalistic tendencies in Scotland in Wales has been demonstrated. Scottish and Welsh societies’ special features concerning the differences between the independence movements in these countries have been analyzed. Causes of the relative success of the Scottish independence movement and reasons behind the relatively low popularity of nationalism in Wales have been identified. Based on the tendencies in the Scottish and Welsh societies, an analysis of future outlook of the Scottish National Party and the Party of Wales has been conducted.

  Special attention is paid to the 1979 and 1997 referendums on the restoration of the Scottish Parliament and creation of the National Assembly of Wales. Research on the causes of the referendums has been carried out, electoral preferences have been demonstrated, differences between the Scottish and Welsh national movements and different levels of home rule support among the Scottish and Welsh have been shown.

  It is argued that independence movements in Scotland and Wales are different in their nature, from which stem the Scottish national party’s and Plaid Cymru’s contrasting electoral results. It is demonstrated that the causes of such electoral performances are not only the historical underpinnings that have shaped both countries throughout centuries, but also the differences in Scotland’s and Wales’ economic development and the ideological distinctions within the Scottish and Welsh independence movements.

Key Words: United Kingdom, Scotland, Wales, referendum, nationalism, independence.

Submitted: 05.03.2021

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