This symposium takes as a point of departure, colonial cultures of Scottish entrepreneurship operating and building in the hemispheres of the Atlantic and the India-Pacific from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. It seeks contributions that explore Scottish traders, merchants, agents, missionaries and others influential in colonial arenas of the Atlantic and India-Pacific ‘worlds’, especially within the analytical frameworks of regional, oceanic, and World/Global historiography, methods of cultural and historical geography, as well as economic and business history. We are interested in research that maps diasporic networks—familial, professional, entrepreneurial, religious etc.—and their material presence with a view to better understanding the significance of Scottish modes of operation, particularly (but not exclusively) those that demonstrate their achievement as entrepreneurs in a networked, international environment. In sum, we seek a range of disciplinary perspectives on the spatial and material dimensions of Scottish entrepreneurship in the colonial arena.
Related questions include (but are not limited to): how do we begin to understand the particular Scottish contribution to the colonial built environment, and why is it important? Does reference to a ‘British’ empire in this context too readily encourage coagulation, even confusion, especially where clear ethnic predominance was seen to occur? And how might architecture have been used to forge, or even dissolve, distinctive forms of Scottishness within the wider limits of British identity?