MISS: Melbourne Irish Studies Seminar

An Inter-University Forum for Irish and Irish-Australian Studies

6 pm to 7.30 pm @ THE ORATORY, NEWMAN COLLEGE

Semester 2 2019

WEDNESDAY 17th July 6pm.

Jill C. Bender

University of North Carolina at Greensboro 

The “Marriage Force”: State-sponsored Irish female migration to southern Africa

During the mid-nineteenth century, colonial officials proposed sending impoverished Irish women to the distant colonies of the British Empire, where they might marry restless settlers. On the surface, these state-sponsored migration schemes appeared to benefit both Ireland and the colonies of destination, including Australia, Canada, and southern Africa. According to colonial officials, Ireland would be rid of a superfluous population, the Irish women would attain social and economic advancement, and the colonies would gain much-needed female migrants. Yet, authorities quickly found their optimism tempered by realities, as they faced difficulties posed by religious and cultural differences before the migrant ships had even departed. In this paper, Jill Bender examines an 1850s migration scheme designed to send Irish women to marry members of the British German Legion in southern Africa. Her study not only addresses questions of migration and gender, but also explores the ways in which local concerns in Britain and Ireland could and did shape imperial policies.


Past Seminars

Monday June 3rd 2019
Peter Burke
“True to Ireland, Eire’s conscientious objectors in New Zealand in World War II.

Tuesday 16th April  2019
Patrick Morgan “The Mannix Era”

Tuesday 26th March 2019

Sharon Crozier-De Rosa, University of Wollongong
‘A Sword of Light…or a Swashbuckling and Murderous Fraud? Contesting Memories of the Violent Revolutionary Irish Woman’.


Tuesday 12th February 2019

Prof. Regina Uí Chollatáin School of Irish, Celtic Studies and Folklore, University College Dublin

Revival and Irish language media: The Australian Connection

Thursday 8 November, 2018

5.30pm – 7:00pm  

Newman College in association with the Gerry Higgins Chair of Irish Studies and the Melbourne Irish Studies Seminar and are pleased to present

Archbishop Goold and the Invention of Melbourne

Paola Colleoni (University of Melbourne) will talk about St. Patrick’s Cathedral; Huw Sandaver (Mannix Library) on Visualising Goold’s Library; and Prof. Jaynie Anderson (University of Melbourne) Goold’s Passion for Late Baroque Painting.

Tuesday 18 September, 2018

The D’Altons of Dublin: An Irish Regency Romance

Dr Craig D’Alton

Tuesday 21 November, 2017

Irish Divorce and James Joyce’s Ulysses

Peter Kuch (Eamon Cleary Professor of Irish Studies at the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand)

Tuesday 19 September, 2017

How do you feel about that?: Talking with the Provos about emotion

Dr Debra Smith (Research Fellow, Victoria University, Melbourne)

Tuesday 1 August, 2017

The Witness and the Archive: Digitising Memories of Childhood Abuse in Ireland

Emilie Pine (Associate Professor in Modern Drama at the School of English, Drama and Film, University College Dublin)

Tuesday 25 July, 2017

Pathways to Permanence: Irish Working Holidaymakers in Australia

Fidelma Breen (University of Adelaide)

Wednesday 21 June, 2017 (**note irregular day)

Killurin to Kalgoorlie: the making of Hugh Mahon

Jeff Kildea (Adjunct Professor in Irish Studies, University of NSW)

This paper will be accompanied by the launch of Jeff Kildea’s new book on Mahon.