The Ulster-Scots Language Society, formed to promote the Ulster-Scots language, our own hamely tongue

Back Streets o the Claw

Back Streets o the ClawThe Claw, tough as old boots, was hanging on to its identity with stubborn pride. It had to do so, for of all of the inner-city districts in Bigganreek, it was the prime target for redevelopment. But this hard-nosed Ulster-Scots community had a soft centre.

Jack M'Clean was not struggling to escape from the Claw. But he lost his first job, and then his first girlfriend, and still he tried to find real meaning to life among his "ain folk". If he was lucky, he might just find another steady love too.

Eventually, he found both after an unsettling move to the Newbiggins housing estate, but in a very, very unexpected way.

This partly surreal, partly satirical novel has been written by Philip Robinson as a companion to his Wake the Tribe o Dan. By way of contrast, this humorous fantasy portrays a different Ulster-Scots culture. It is aggressively urban, anti-authoritarian and male-centred. Jack M'Clean's personal story reflects the tragic demise of his own working-class community. And his hopes and dreams were simply those of the better life promised to thousands of others reared in The Back Streets o the Claw.