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Exhibitions, Events and More at National Library of Scotland in February


A Better World? Scotland after the First World War:
Marking the centenary of the Armistice in 2018, A Better World? explores the impact of the First World War on life and society in postwar Scotland.
After the huge sacrifices made during the war, the country faced further enormous challenges. In harsh economic conditions, struggles ensued between competing ideals and priorities. Some fought determinedly for their own idea of ‘a better world’ – this involved better housing, workers’ rights, equality, or a new Scottish identity.
Runs until Saturday 27 April
George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EW
Admission free

Strike for Freedom: Slavery, Civil War and the Frederick Douglass Family in the Walter O. and Linda Evans Collection:
Born into slavery in 1818, self-emancipated author and activist, Frederick Douglass, is the most famous freedom-fighter in US history. Arriving in Edinburgh in 1846, he became “Scotland’s antislavery agent". A world exclusive, our display exhibits the original letters, speeches and photographs of Frederick Douglass and his family. All of life is here – romance, tragedy, hope, despair, love, war, protest and friendship – as the Douglass family worked together for a new dawn of freedom.
Runs until Saturday 16 February
George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EW
Admission free

Edinburgh highlights:

The Chinese in Britain:​​
To mark Chinese New Year, Barclay Price talks about his new book, The Chinese in Britain – A History of
Visitors and Settlers. Price’s talk will include the life of Britain’s first Chinese immigrant who settled in Edinburgh in 1778.
Monday 4 February, 2pm
George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EW
Admission free / booking essential

Discover maps workshop:
Discover our collection of more than two million maps, from early atlases to the latest digital mapping. Learn about the range of maps held at the Library, and the information they provide. More than 200,000 maps can now be viewed on our maps website. This introductory session will last approximately one hour and will be followed by a 30 minute supported session for which you will need a Library card.
Saturday 23 February, 2.30–4pm
George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EW
Admission free / booking essential

Glasgow highlights:

Robert Burns Celebration Event at Kelvin Hall:
To celebrate Burns Night, we will display two rare Burns manuscripts at Kelvin Hall in conjunction with The Mitchell Library. On display will be Holy Willie's Prayer, one of the finest examples of Burns’s religious satire, together with The Ordination, a satire on the appointment of a Kilmarnock minister.
Friday 25 January, 11am–3pm
Kelvin Hall, 1445 Argyle Street, Glasgow, G3 8AW
Admission free / drop-in event, no booking required

A Wizard's World:
Discover some weird and wonderful objects from a world of spells, potions and divination in this magic inspired tour. There will be chance to see trick films, witches and mischief-making on the big screen too! Suitable for families (children aged 5 and above).
Tuesday 12 February and Wednesday, 13 February, 2–3pm
Kelvin Hall, 1445 Argyle Street, Glasgow, G3 8AW
Admission free / drop-in event, no booking required

For more details and to book any of the above go to

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