Colin Kirkwood

Raretunes Colin Kirkwood


Colin Kirkwood is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist with lifelong involvement in adult education and community action. He describes himself as a Scottish generalist with interests in literature, moral philosophy, history, politics, religion and direct democracy. He takes a personalist view of his approach, which he describes as dialogical relational psychotherapy.

Colin worked as a Senior Lecturer in Counselling Studies at the University of Edinburgh for ten years, and focused on dialogue between psychodynamic perspectives and the person-centred approach. He was later Senior Psychotherapist at the Huntercombe Edinburgh Hospital, working with women and girls with severe eating disorders.

He has written extensively on community and adult education, and much of his thinking is available in the books he has published.

In this conversation and interview for The Ragged University he talks of his experience as one of those instrumental in establishing the Adult Learning Project in Edinburgh over 30 years ago. Inspired by the work of Paulo Freire, it took an innovative stance of valuing local knowledge and building educational processes around the ideas and issues which the community felt were pertinent to their lives. This is an opportunity to hear Colin talk about how he, and others, proposed the project and brought it into a reality which has served the Edinburgh community for decades:


Scottish Metrical Psalms

Colin has a deep interest in the metrical psalm tradition in Scotland and is a keen performer of this music. The following tracks were recorded by Stuart Eydmann for Raretunes at Colin’s home in Edinburgh in January 2000.

Psalm 1


Psalm 2


Psalm 3


Psalm 4


Psalm 6


Psalm 7