Aila Schäfer


Aila Schaefer


Landscape’s Constitutive Role in Transforming the Highlander in the Ossianic Collections: James Macpherson’s Highland Tours 1760-1761

Supervised by Dr Jim MacPherson, Dr Mairi MacPherson and Dr Ian Blyth

Aila’s MRes explores James Macpherson’s Ossianic Collections in the context of its collection process during his Highland Tours in 1760-1761. Macpherson’s work and its great impact and popularity among his contemporaries caught her attention during her undergraduate studies of English and Spanish literature and motivated her to conduct research on the Ossianic Collections that went beyond the authenticity debate. She is particularly interested in Ossianic geographies and examines the way in which place, landscapes and travel contribute towards the distinctive appeal of the Collections. Her research will elaborate how Macpherson changed and reconstructed the local area of the Highlands in the Ossianic Collections, without dissolving its independence.

Aila is delighted to combine her interests in Scottish history and literature in her postgraduate research. Outwith her studies she enjoys outdoor activities like camping and hillwalking with her dog Nevis, as well as some creative crafting projects.