What is Wilderness? (Wilder) | 2015


What is Wilderness? The Oxford English Dictionary defines ‘wilderness’ as; an uncultivated, uninhabited, and inhospitable region. Whilst travelling around Scotland, I encountered both city and country folk who labelled the NW coast as a wilderness. This film and question was born out of a discussion with retired BBC Radio producer Lesley Muir who lives near Achiltibuie. What actually is a wilderness in today’s ever globalised world?

As someone from the city (London), the stark contrast between the built up concrete jungle, and the vast expanse of openness across Scotland, strikes clear that the latter is a rural, remote, dynamic environment. However, is it a wilderness? I agree with ‘uncultivated’ as a base definition for the term, but in today’s ever evolving, every shrinking globe, the definition could be reassessed to represent the convergence of urban and rural.

Google ‘Scottish Wilderness’ and a host of articles, websites, and blogs throw the label around loosely. In this film Lesley questions whether Scotland still has a wilderness, given the modern lack of truly native forests and wildlife. She talks about the absence of top predators to balance the food chain, the lack of a self sustaining biome, and whether if people manage it, is that the closest we can get?

Is the only true wilderness outer space? In today’s NASA fuelled exploration, even that needs a reconsideration…

One response to “What is Wilderness? (Wilder) | 2015”

  1. You are so cool! I don’t think I’ve read through a single thing like this before. So good to discover another person with some original thoughts on this issue. Seriously.. many thanks for starting this up. This web site is something that is needed on the web, someone with some originality!

Leave a Reply