Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson has said she cannot blame voters for feeling "bullied and hectored" into backing the SNP.

She used a lecture in London to highlight the differences between patriotism and nationalism - going on to brand the latter a form of "identity politics".

While she conceded various political parties have "been at fault over time in claiming to have a monopoly on the national mood", Ms Davidson insisted it is the modern SNP that has "made this technique its own".

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She claimed that north of the border, issues of identity and nationalism have dominated the agenda "not just for my time in politics, but actually for pretty much my entire adult life".

Speaking in a lecture to the Orwell Foundation as she became the first Conservative to address the organisation, she said: "The truth is that the nationalist politics identified by Orwell - the attempt to classify and label human beings into groups marked 'good' and 'bad' - has become a key part of our political practice in Scotland.

"And it has to be said that this has been pursued quite deliberately, so that many people who do not subscribe to the loudly advanced, so-called 'good' side of the argument feel voiceless and helpless.

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"Because in Scotland, political nationalism has introduced the idea that only one side of the constitutional divide can be the authentic voice of 'the people of Scotland'.

"That only it has the right to be heard. That other voices are, by their nature, illegitimate and phoney."

She quoted the comedian Billy Connolly, who said: "I love Scotland. But I hate the way nationalists think they own the place."

As a result of such politics, she said "the implication hangs in the air - those who are not orthodox, or do not follow the right way, are foreign, we are alien, we are other".

She added: "This technique has, for a long time, been effective. If people feel bullied and hectored into supporting SNP, I don't blame them."

She described nationalism as "a state of mind which, by definition, cannot tolerate plurality".

Ms Davidson went on: "It is a state of mind where one ideology, one myth, must take precedence over all else and which demands people support one camp or another."

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She said "nationalism is a part of the Scottish psyche - and it would only be hypocritical to deny it".

She went on to state that the "challenge" is how to react to this, asking: "Do we submit before this nationalist instinct and the either/or dichotomy which it demands of us? Or do we follow the path of patriotism?"

She argued patriotism "doesn't impose itself, it doesn't take itself too seriously", and stressed that unlike nationalism, "patriotism celebrates plurality".

Ms Davidson said: "To be patriotically British does not mean that we must oppose others.

"Indeed, patriotism celebrates difference and messiness. We can be proudly Scottish, Welsh, Bajan or Pakistani, at the same time as enjoying our Britishness. Patriotism does not force us to rank these identities in order, as if one or other has a higher claim."

She also said that after 10 years of the SNP being in power at Holyrood, there is now "an undoubted sense that people have rather had enough".

She said those who feel this way "include parents who have begun to notice that while these constitutional contortions have kept us all hugely occupied, their children's education has been getting steadily worse and worse".

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She added: "That, perhaps, is the greatest rebuke against nationalism. It's that it doesn't actually make the trains run on time. Only good governance will do that.

"My hope is that, in Scotland, our decades-long obsession with the constitution may soon be coming to an end - and we can start using the enormous powers of our Parliament to improve the actual fabric of our country."

SNP candidate for Edinburgh North and Leith Deidre Brock said: "This is a lesson in double-think from Ruth Davidson, whose own political message could not be more 'tribal' - it is Orwellian to lecture others on nationalism when she's the one who drapes herself in a flag and drives around in a tank.

"Her claim to the moral high ground is totally undermined given that the SNP's vision of an independent Scotland is inclusive, outward-looking and internationalist, while Ms Davidson supports a Brexit Britain turning its back on its nearest neighbours and trying to make enemies of our European allies."

Scottish Labour General Election campaign manager James Kelly said: "What an embarrassment Ruth Davidson is. This is the leader who turned our political debate into a shouting match about flags rather than the issues people care about.

"At every turn, Ruth Davidson has put the narrow British nationalism of the Tories ahead of what's best for the people of this country."