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Gavin Miller


Gavin Miller is currently employed by the University of Glasgow, Laing's alma mater, where he works in the Department of English Literature. Miller's scholarly interest in Laing began during his PhD in contemporary Scottish Literature at the University of Edinburgh. Laing seemed to provide a compelling articulation of the lives described in works by writers such as Alasdair Gray and George Friel.

The PhD eventually became a study both of recent Scottish fiction and the history of ideas which it runs alongside. Scottish thinkers such as William Robertson Smith, John Macmurray, W.R.D. Fairbairn, and, of course, Laing himself, were shown as vital to an understanding of modern Scottish fiction.

Since then, Miller has developed both literary and psychiatric lines of research, publishing on Gray, Laing, Macmurray, Suttie, and Fairbairn in various journals.

He is currently working on two monographs (as well as editing a book of essays on Scottish culture and modern theory). The first monograph, on R.D. Laing, will be published by the Centre for the History of Ideas in Scotland as part of their series, Edinburgh Review Introductions. This book will provide a concise introduction to 'anti-psychiatry' and an exposition of some of Laing's major ideas. It will also place his work within the context of psychiatry and philosophy in Scotland, and will discuss the continuing relevance and impact of his thought. The other monograph, on Alasdair Gray, is contracted to Rodopi -- it is, in a sense, an application of Laingian ideas to recent Scottish literary culture (and beyond).


Alasdair Gray: The Fiction of Communion (in preparation).

R.D. Laing, Edinburgh Review Introductions (Edinburgh: Centre for the History of Ideas in Scotland, in preparation)


Scotland in Theory: Reflections on Scottish Literature and Culture, eds. Eleanor Bell and Gavin Miller (Hamburg: Peter Lang, forthcoming)

A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue, eds. Margaret Dareau, Harry Watson, Lorna Pike, vols 9-12 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming)

Books and Chapters:

R.D. Laing (Edinburgh University Press. 2004)(Columbia University Press. 2004)
Introduction in the SLS Bibliography: Laing by Miller
by Ron Roberts

‘‘Persuade without convincing … represent without reasoning:’ the inferiorist mythology of the Scots language.’ Scotland in Theory: Reflections on Scottish Literature and Culture (Hamburg: Peter Lang, forthcoming)

Peer-reviewed Journals:

"We are all murderers and prostitutes:" R.D. Laing and the work of Alasdair Gray. PsyArt: A Hyperlink Journal for the Psychological Study of the Arts, article 021122. online

‘The Cult of the White Goddess in Alasdair Gray’s Lanark.’ Studies in Scottish Literature (forthcoming)

‘Literary Narrative as Soteriology in the work of Kurt Vonnegut and Alasdair Gray.’ Journal of Narrative Theory 31.3 (2001)

‘The Democratic Psyche: Scotland’s Philosophical Psychiatry.’ The Irish Review 28 (2001)

‘Cognition and Community: The Scottish Philosophical Context of the ‘Divided Self.’’Janus Head: Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature, Continental Philosophy, Phenomenological Psychology and the Arts 4.1 (Spring 2001). online


‘Alasdair Gray. Shorter Fiction.’ Dictionary of Literary Biography (in preparation)

‘R.D. Laing.’ Edinburgh Review 110 online

‘Robin Jenkins’s Poor Angus: Confessions of a Justified Artist.’ Edinburgh Review 106

‘Pure Dead Mental: Toni Davidson’s Scar Culture.’ Edinburgh Review 103

‘An introduction to the work of George Friel.’ Dictionary of Scottish Biography volume one: 1971-75 (Irvine: Carrick Media, 1999)


‘Stephen Bernstein, Alasdair Gray.’ Edinburgh Review 106

‘Derrick J. McClure, Language, Poetry and Nationhood: Scots as a Poetic Language from 1878 to the Present.’ Edinburgh Review 105

‘Magi Gibson, Wild Women of a Certain Age; Janet Paisley, Ye Cannae Win.’ Edinburgh Review 105

‘John Seabrook, Nobrow: The Culture of Marketing; The Marketing of Culture.’ Edinburgh Review 104

‘Raymond Friel and Richard Price, Renfrewshire in Old Photographs.’ Edinburgh Review 104

‘Frances Williams, Wild Blue.’ Edinburgh Review 104


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