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Island women : an oral history, 1910-1960


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Brennan, SN 2002 , 'Island women : an oral history, 1910-1960', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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In this thesis I explore the personal experiences and memories of a group of
Furneaux Island women during the period 1910 to 1960. The most important
sources I access are the voices of the women who agreed to provide oral
evidence. I use their voices to tell a story within a broader island story. Where
possible and appropriate, I have supplemented their oral testimony with
documentary evidence.
Part One provides an historical overview of the early arrival of women and
the establishment of households in the islands as well as an analysis of the
connections between family history and a sense of place. For many women
island history is interwoven with family history. I argue that it is this fact,
coupled with multiple island kinship ties, that has led to a powerful sense of
identification with the islands - the site of the family narrative. In Part Two I
use a chronological format to research the daily lives of island women at
different life cycle stages. First, I explore the lives of daughters within the
family home, and particularly their relationships with their mothers. This is
followed by an examination of influences from outside the home upon girls,
and I describe how young women move away from the family to set up their
own households. In Part Three I change from a chronological approach to
one that analyses, topically, the physical and emotional responsibilities of
adult women within the home and the wider island community.
It is from this examination of women's lives at different stages and in
different settings that the primary concerns of the thesis - feelings of isolation
and a sense of place - emerge. It is in the remembering of everyday life that
the effects of isolation and a sense of place become most apparent.. On a
broad level I argue that physical and emotional isolation have several results.
These include, a close and mutual dependence among women within the
family, the development of an extensive community social life and,
ultimately, active efforts to overcome the potential for cultural isolation

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Brennan, SN
Keywords: Women, Aboriginal Australian
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2002 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Thesis (Ph.D)--University of Tasmania, 2002. Includes bibliographical references

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