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A question on the Shetland Islands


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The fact of the matter is that we are Scottish in Shetland, whether some people like it or not!


Fair enough, we have historical ties to Norway, but they are just that, historical!


I have a slightly different view to others, my old man is from the Western Isles, and I am incredibly proud to be Scottish, but at the same time I will always be a Shetlander as I have lived here all my life (apart from uni!) Although this is the attitude taken by most of my friends as well, that were born in Shetland to Shetland parents.


I think this is the same all around the country, people are very proud to be Scottish, and Glaswegian etc


It really annoys me when people say that we are from Norway, its just not true!

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I think Parahandy made a good point there. When I am asked where I am from I answer, 'Shetland'. This might be followed up with, 'Where is that?', to which I normally respond, the cold wet rock (island) to the north of Scotland.


I think this is of significance because a lot of people when visiting another country would primarily answer with their country first and then move on to the area of the country they live in.


I tend to start with Shetland first and then move outwards.


I have never answered the question with Scotland or Norway. Again, I have never said, 'The cold wet rock 200 miles west of Norway'. I might use that soon though. It could get a few folk thinking. :wink:


Isn't it amazing just how many people south who don't know where Shetland is. I know of two items that prove what I mean, They are a bit dated now. but just outside Aberdeen in a shop last September I was asked where I was from and said the Shetland Islands to witch the reply I got back was where was that


1) My father, who did his national service in the RAF back in the 1950s and on his first leave home he was issued with a train ticket (warrant) to Shetland by the sergeant on duty. When he challenged this and pointed out that he could only go as far as Aberdeen and he would need a boat ticket he was told that he could just take the nearest rowing boat and row across the harbour. I thought he was just pulling my leg until my mother produced the ticket from her box of personal papers and showed it to me.


2) Back in 1980 the then Scalloway Postmaster went out to open the building for the postmen and to his surprise found an english man sitting on the step of the main post office door, and when asked what he wanted he asked where he should go to buy his train ticket to Aberdeen

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  • 3 months later...

As girzie has said Shetlanders do not identify with what is perceived as typically 'Scottish'.


Shetlanders are in fact excluded from the national mainstream narrative. William Wallace, Bannockburn, Arbroath etc do not concern the islanders at all. OK, Shetlanders (and Orcadians) form a small minority in a country with 5 million inhabitants but what I find unacceptable is the 'officialization' of the mainstream narrative as the only one that people in Scotland are permitted to buy into. I weigh my words carefully, but this smacks of a totalitarian ideology.


Have you been to the National Museum in Edinburgh? I was struck by the fact that on entering the first room you have to pass through a portal on which is engraved the Arbroath Declaration. The intention is clear. It is telling visitors that what you are about to see is the affirmation of a Scottish identity that defines itself AGAINST England. This feeds into the SNP discourse of victimization. The Scots now see themselves as historic victims and never as history's victimizers. But when it comes to Shetland, the introduction of feudalism and serfdom here, the extinction of the Norn language, in a word, the cultural and economic depradations perpetrated by the Scots who were correctly perceived as foreign invaders and colonizers, never a word, even in the National (sic) Museum of Scotland.

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  • 4 weeks later...
"You can pick your friends but not your relations"

the same thing applies here. I'm a Shetlander because that's where I live full-stop. The fact that I was born here some mite imply that it would reinforce the point, but that should not make any difference. Any one who wants to live and make there home here should be able to say I'm a Shetlander because thats where my Home is


Using that viewpoint, if an Welsh, Irish or Scottish person (or just yourself) lived in England, would they/you consider themselves/yourself to be English ?


I suspect that for the majority, this would not be the case.

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Isn't it amazing just how many people south who don't know where Shetland is.


That is true, I got into an argument with someone who claimed that Shetland had nothing to do with the oil because it is one of the smallest Western Isles. Then he went onto say how Inverness is the oil capital of Scotland...




I would say I'm a Westsider... of Shetland.

Yeah I would say Shetland first. Definitely. Scotland is like another country really when you visit it, there is so many cultural differences - not a bad thing at aa.


Someone asked me at the Scotland vs. Norway game who I was going to support. I said Scotland, Scotland didn't give us away as some stupid dowry... but then again they did get rid of our Yudal law.


Get Stuart Hill on this thread. Joke.

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  • 3 weeks later...

revip revip,i agree with gabby johnson.the sheriff's a ------.a'm definately fae shetland,been sooth,been tae canada,been tae norway.most say i liked norway da most,but a'm still fae shetland.it is funny how you can wind fok up when you tell dem you're fae 60 nort,polar bears,ice bergs an da lik.try it.dunna furgit tae tell dem aboot da lerick tae bigton intercity.

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