Content Category

Literary Criticism

Abstract/Description

Walter Scott’s Redgauntlet is a novel of families, specifically the Redgauntlets and the Fairfords. This is emphasized by the father/son relationship, which is reflected in the relationship between ruler and subjects. The Fairfords and Redgaunlets are fathers and sons, while George III and Charles Stuart are the rulers. Both the Redgauntlets and the Fairfords are a microcosms for the relationship the two rulers have with their subjects. The same domineering relationship Hugh has with Darsie is reflected in the sort of kingship Charles Stuart wants with his subjects. And just as the Fairfords have a relationship where Saunders is eventually lenient towards Alan, so too is King George lenient with the Jacobites. These two microcosms illustrate the good and the bad of the reigns. Thereby showing that no government is perfect, but that the better must be accepted by its subjects in order for the country to run smoothly.

Origin of Submission

as part of a class

Faculty Involvement

Paul Westover

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Fathers and Sons, Kings and Country: The Fight between Methods of Ruling in Sir Walter Scott’s Redgauntlet

Walter Scott’s Redgauntlet is a novel of families, specifically the Redgauntlets and the Fairfords. This is emphasized by the father/son relationship, which is reflected in the relationship between ruler and subjects. The Fairfords and Redgaunlets are fathers and sons, while George III and Charles Stuart are the rulers. Both the Redgauntlets and the Fairfords are a microcosms for the relationship the two rulers have with their subjects. The same domineering relationship Hugh has with Darsie is reflected in the sort of kingship Charles Stuart wants with his subjects. And just as the Fairfords have a relationship where Saunders is eventually lenient towards Alan, so too is King George lenient with the Jacobites. These two microcosms illustrate the good and the bad of the reigns. Thereby showing that no government is perfect, but that the better must be accepted by its subjects in order for the country to run smoothly.