Propaganda — a weapon of the Second World War
'Make do and mend'.
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A new resource published on the National Library of Scotland website today takes a look at propaganda from the Second World War.
In 'Propaganda — A weapon of war', you'll find images which represent what British Government departments were producing and distributing on home soil and overseas between 1939 and 1945.
White propaganda was used on the Home Front. Our website selection highlights booklets covering everything from suggestions to housewives for dealing with incendiary devices to 'advice to the fat' that they needn't eat their sweet ration.
Black propaganda was airdropped throughout Nazi-occupied Europe, and often written in the language of the country it was intended for. Most of our images are of items in French or German. They are part of the collection built up by Peter Ritchie Calder, a Scottish journalist. Calder played a key role in the top-secret foreign propaganda unit, the Political Warfare Executive.
Explore 'Propaganda — A weapon of war'.
25 May 2006
Research funding for military maps project
Funding has been announced for a maps research project examining the military landscape of Scotland in the 18th century.
Starting in October, a three-year PhD studentship will research maps and plans which depict the construction of militarised Scotland from roughly 1707 to around 1815. Key to the study are the Board of Ordnance maps, at the National Library of Scotland and elsewhere, which show fortifications, battles, roads and towns. These map collections and associated archival records are also a useful source of information on Scottish clans.
The research will broaden the understanding of this material and its context, and produce a 'finding list' for 18th-century Scottish military mapping which is held in several institutions in England and Scotland.
Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the project is a collaboration between NLS and the Institute of Geography at Edinburgh University. Postgraduates have until 16 June to submit their applications for the studentship. Further details are at www.geos.ed.ac.uk/geography/pg/human/
You can view around 400 digitised Board of Ordnance maps and plans in our feature on Military Maps of Scotland.
25 May 2006
Poetry pamphlet quaich goes to North Uist
with CMMA quaich
Winner of the Callum Macdonald Memorial Award 2006 is 'North Uist Sea Poems', a poetry pamphlet self-published by Pauline Prior-Pitt. The North Uist poet received the Callum Macdonald Quaich and £500 at a ceremony in the National Library of Scotland earlier this week.
This annual NLS competition recognises skill and effort in the publishing of poetry pamphlets. A sea theme was evident among this year's prize-winning entries. Along with 'Exploding Cicadas' by Martin Bates, the joint runner-up was 'Sea Stories' by Lesley Harrison.
Callum Macdonald was a renowned publisher of Scottish literature. One of the award judges was his widow, Tessa Ransford, who praised the winning entry. 'My late husband would have been awed and touched by this pamphlet, its content and production,' she said.
You can find background information on this year's award in our CMMA shortlist press release.
17 May 2006
Exquisite Phoebe Anna Traquair manuscript online
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A key Arts and Crafts manuscript has just been made available on the web for the first time by the National Library of Scotland.
Phoebe Anna Traquair's illuminated manuscript of Elizabeth Barrett Browning's 'Sonnets from the Portuguese' is one of the Library's treasures. Made in Edinburgh between 1892 and 1897, it displays bold and bright watercolours, gold leaf and intricate decorative motifs. It is an exquisite work, and until this week it could only be studied by visiting NLS in person.
Our online Phoebe Anna Traquair feature was launched this week. Using zoom-and-pan images, you can now examine in close detail each of the 44 sonnet pages, plus the title page and end page. Background information about the manuscript and the artist has been provided by freelance art historian Elizabeth Cumming.
'Sonnets from the Portuguese' includes what is probably Barrett Browning's best-known poem, sonnet 43: 'How do I love thee? Let me count the ways'.
See our digitised manuscript at http://digital.nls.uk/traquair
10 May 2006