English and Scottish Literature

Writing the North exhibition

This major new exhibition tells the story of Northern Islands literature through books, sound recordings, manuscripts and illustrations.

The exhibition will guide visitors through four themes: myths and legends, visitors to the islands, working lives, and the sounds of Orkney and Shetland. Interactive displays will bring to life what it was like to live, to work and to write in the islands from the early nineteenth century to the present day.

The opening is on March 28th and includes a talk by the poet Robert Alan Jamieson and introductions to Writing the North and its literature by project leaders Mark Smith and Penny Fielding, Professor of Nineteenth-century Literature and Head of the Department of English Literature at the University of Edinburgh.

The exhibition runs until May 10th and culminates in a day of talks and readings. For more information on the exhibition, including location and admission details, see the project website:

Writing the North exhibition

The project, Writing the North, is a collaboration between the University of Edinburgh, the Shetland Museum and Archives and the Orkney Library and Archive. The project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council to explore the writing of Orkney and Shetland and to make connections between the history of literature in the islands from the early nineteenth century and creative writers working today.