A tale of two currencies: talking about money and (de)securitising moves in the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum

Faye Donnelly, William Vlcek*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

This article investigates a ‘tale of two currencies’ that played out during the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum. Taking our cue from securitisation literature, we examine what happens when currency is framed as a security issue and threat. Studying this case, however, we find that the Copenhagen School underestimate the ability of actors to perform (de)securitising moves within interactive games about financial security. In such instances, we contend that currency can have significant yet unpredictable effects on how security can be spoken, enacted, and contested. Drawing attention to the heated debates that erupted during the two televised debates aired by STV and BBC, we reveal that the question of currency shaped the ‘Better Together’ and ‘Yes’ campaigns during the 2014 referendum in divergent ways. In the process, we find that currency offers new opportunities for understanding how money can speak security in Scotland and beyond.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98 - 111
Number of pages14
JournalCritical Studies on Security
Volume9
Issue number2
Early online date19 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Currency
  • (De)securitising moves
  • Televised debates
  • Scottish Independence
  • Money talk

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