MISS: An Irish Family in Trinidad

Tuesday 10th May, 2022 at 6:30pm (AEST/UTC+10), 9:30am (London/Dublin UTC+1)
Dr Jennifer McLaren
“This vile place”. An Irish Family in Trinidad in the Revolutionary Atlantic

This paper traces the Caribbean lives of Ulsterman John Black and his daughter Adele, 1771-1840. Black left Belfast after the Seven Years War to establish a Caribbean node in his family’s Atlantic network. He became enmeshed in transatlantic slavery in Grenada and Trinidad as a slave trader, planter and colonial administrator. His daughter Adele was born in Spanish Trinidad and spent most of her childhood in Belfast, before returning to the Caribbean to raise a family with her Irish husband. Both yearned for a return to Ireland but lived out their lives in Trinidad. Father and daughter illuminate the ways of being Irish in a dysfunctional, crisis-ridden slave society, with the complexities and challenges that entailed.

Jennifer McLaren was awarded a PhD from Macquarie University (2018) on Irish Caribbean connections during the Revolutionary Era. She is currently writing a monograph based on her thesis, with support from the Australian Academy of the Humanities and a Huntington Library fellowship. Her most recent publication is a chapter in Ireland’s Imperial Connections, 1775-1947 (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020) that profiles Dr John Crawford, an early Irish humanitarian in Barbados and Demerara.

LOCATION (online)
This online seminar will be held via zoom. The zoom room will be open from 6:20 to allow everyone to get the technology sorted. Please keep your microphone on mute for the duration of the talk. We will be taking questions via the chat function so you can type in your question anytime and the facilitator will ask the speaker the questions at the end of the talk. Please RSVP to Dianne.hall@vu.edu.au if you would like the zoom link.