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Social and political thought of Saunders Lewis.

Williams, Emyr. 2009. Social and political thought of Saunders Lewis. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.

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Abstract

Located within the embryonic discipline of Welsh political thought, this thesis seeks to identify, explore and analyse the central ideas apparent in the political thought of John Saunders Lewis. It utilises key texts authored by Saunders Lewis with which to focus upon these ideas, and these texts and their inherent ideas form the basis of the earlier chapters. The thesis operates employing a 'History of Ideas' methodology. The introduction sections seek to locate the contemporary need for a study such as this, and also provide some background and context to Saunders Lewis' political thought. Noting that political ideas are not monolithic and free-standing, ideas and thinkers that influenced Saunders Lewis are also identified and analysed before engaging with his authored texts directly. The latter chapters of this thesis seek to examine the ideas of Saunders Lewis that are relevant to the contemporary theory context. The thesis culminates with an analysis of Saunders Lewis' nationalism employing contemporary nationalism analysis paradigms. A counter-critique of these paradigms is also performed employing Saunders Lewis' nationalism. The central ideas of Saunders Lewis are examined, namely his political thought regarding Welsh history, nationhood, language, culture, state and their associated ideas. Whilst his ideas focus upon Wales and the Welsh societal and political experience, this thesis is also intended to be of use within the context of a wider investigation into nationalism, as well as to wider political theory. Despite the simplistic labelling of Saunders Lewis as a 'radical conservative', the analysis of his thought in this thesis reveals a far more complex thinker than this description would suggest, as he sought to combine an ideology of linguistic cultural preservation with a vision of national liberation. Contrary to Saunders Lewis' definition of nationalism, this thesis employs as its investigative methodology the premise that nationalism is a fluid concept and phenomenon that interfaces and interacts with other left-right ideologies, thus enabling a critical overview of other nationalist positions in order to highlight and aid in the understanding of Saunders Lewis' own concepts.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Modern Languages
ISBN: 9781303197109
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 12 Feb 2016 23:12
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/54521

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