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About the Author

James Hunter is Emeritus Professor of History at the University of the Highlands and Islands and was its first Director of the Centre for History. The author of eleven books about the Highlands and Islands, he has also been active in the public life of the area for many years. He is the author of the award-winning Set Adrift Upon the World (Birlinn, 2016).


'Hunter adds to his remarkable body of work with a new and in-depth exploration of the impact of the potato famine on the north of Scotland. ...Scene after scene of popular resistance and the state's bungling responses are brought to life through Hunter's clear prose. His loving attention to detail shines through'

* The Bottle Imp (Best Scottish Books, 2019) *

'Hunter never forgets that history is first of all narrative - and this book is rich in stories - or that is subject is the experience of individual men and women, creatures of flesh and blood, not abstractions. Insurrection is fascinating reading, both painful and uplifting'

-- Allan Massie * Scotsman *

'A gripping, heart-breaking account of the famine winter of 1847. ... Hunter's pacily written history turns a telescope on the society and culture, and the economic and political predicament of these regions. Insurrection takes the generalisation and theories of [the communist manifesto] and puts a face to them. They stare out from this book - thousands upon thousands of them - gaunt and helpless with hunger'

-- Rosemary Goring * Herald *

'The Scottish potato famine was caused by the same blight that brought disaster to Ireland, ... Insurrection describes how Scottish landowners were both the cause and cure of the famine'

* Times *

'Tells the story of a savage, brutal, largely forgotten episode in Scotland's history through the human tales Hunter uncovered in his research'

* Sunday Post *

'No one has done more to help us understand the reality of life in the Highlands and Islands over the past few centuries. Graphs and statistical analyses he leaves to others - his focus has been to give individual Highlanders a voice. It is a deeply troubling yet quite uplifting tale that this most readable book tells'

* Press and Journal *

'Distinguished Highland historian Jim Hunter sheds light on a turbulent episode in the history of the north'

* Caithness Courier *

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