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Susanne Barding

The Islands Book Trust have announced details of their session at Faclan (the Hebridean Book Festival) on Wednesday (18 October) following the launch of their new book ‘Beàrnaraigh na Hearadh – ‘Tis Fifty Years Since’ by Danish anthropologist Susanne Barding.

The event, starting at 7.30pm at An Lanntair, Stornoway, will include:

  • A new 15-minute video of an interview with Susanne Barding, now living in the Faroes, about the background to and content of her book based on research she undertook in Berneray (Harris) in the early 1970s.
  • A discussion between Alasdair MacEachen of the Book Trust and Donald Maclean (Dòmhnall Beag) of Berneray Historical Society about the new book, how Susanne and her book were received by the Berneray community, and the changes which have taken place in the island over the past half century.
  • A first showing of Elspeth Turner’s new 20-minute Gaelic film ‘Marram’ (with English sub-titles), filmed in Berneray and starring leading Gaelic actors such as Dolina MacLennan and Daibhidh Walker, which explores the challenges faced by Gaelic culture in a changing world.

John Randall, chairman of the Book Trust, said: "Now that Susanne’s remarkable book has been launched, this is an opportunity to take stock, reflect on her emotional return to Berneray after 50 years away, how the island has changed since the 1970s, and what the future may hold for this and other Gaelic communities.

"I am delighted that Alasdair MacEachen and Dòmhnall Beag will be able to lead this discussion and that Elspeth Turner will be present to introduce her wonderful and thought-provoking new film."

Tickets for the event can be purchased on the evening or in advance through An Lanntair.

Copies of Susanne Barding’s book will be on sale at the event, or can be ordered via