Pilar Girvan


Testing the protest paradigm: exploring everyday forms of resistance in the Highlands and Islands, c. 1780 – 1930

Supervised by Dr Iain Robertson, UHI Centre for History, Professor Ewen Cameron, University of Edinburgh) and Professor Carl Griffin, Visiting Professor, UHI Centre for History.

Pilar’s research seeks to explore ‘covert’ protest amongst the Highlands and Islands land-working tenantry c. 1780 - 1930. The project’s comparative analysis of different modes of everyday resistance and potential impacts on communities and land relations will enable the uncovering, for the first time, of the entwinings and interactions of small, piecemeal actions with more overt forms of resistance. This will include exploring human/non-human relations, as well as creative engagements with material uncovering women’s everyday resistance during this period. Sources including court records, gaelic oral histories, and Napier Commission testimonies will provide crucial insights into how everyday resistance was performed, perceived and understood within local communities.

Given the strong interdisciplinary nature of the research which encompasses history, historical geography, and ethnography, Pilar’s varied academic background combining geography, land economy and feminist studies will allow her to combine a mixture of feminist, subaltern and nonrepresentational theories with historical methodologies in a unique and exciting new epistemology.

Outwith her studies Pilar enjoys snuggling up with a good book, creative writing, playing board games and woodland wanders.

Pilar can be found on Twitter @PilarGirvan where she’ll be posting information about her research. You can reach Pilar at 22022037@uhi.ac.uk.

Pilar Girvan