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Abstract

Discusses the treatment of the central character, the Gaelic-speaking minister Maighstir Sachairi, in the novel And the Cock Crew (1945), by Fionn Mac Colla (Thomas Donaldson, 1906-1975), about the Highland clearances, the evictions of the local crofting inhabitants in the north of Scotland to make way for sheep-farming, and argues that, although the novel condemns the Presbyterian clergy for colluding in the evictions and preaching submission to those evicted, Mac Colla's novel is deeply imbued with the Calvinism it might seem to reject, and that the central scene, a debate between Sachairi and Gaelic bard, is structured around the Scottish Catechism, inverting the conventional power-relationship between the minister and the his parishioner.

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