In this essay, I argue that Walter Scott’s scholarly interest in what he calls the “melting and dissolving” of Scotland’s “peculiar features”—the traditions, superstitions, and so on—into those of England, finds a formal analog in his best-selling narrative poem, The Lay of the Last Minstrel. I focus on how Scott enriches narrator-space—a narratological category that structures the relations and tensions among multiple narrating voices in a single work—to examine the changes that make up media history. While Romantic-era media theory tends to be criticized for the way it produces a “confrontational model[] of print and oral tradition,” I argue that Scott uses narrative form in his poetry to produce a much more complex account of media-historical change than we might otherwise expect.


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pp. 697-716
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