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'Policy on the run' : transportation, the law, and empire : the case of Van Diemen's Land

Gunn, TPV 2009 , ''Policy on the run' : transportation, the law, and empire : the case of Van Diemen's Land', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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The approach to the bicentennial of the British settlement of Australia in 1988 generated renewed interest in a broad spectrum of Australian history. One genre that was heavily revised was that of convict studies. Convicts and convictism and their role in the early development of white settlement have been much re-examined. A significant body of work has been focussed on convicts as unfree labour and unwilling emigrants. Because of this focus emphasis has been placed on convict agency and their ability to resist the system. As a body they have been dissected into micro groups to explain how the system then impacted on the individual. Few works have looked the other way and seen how the individual impacted on the system. By both their presence and their agency, convicts forced changes to the way in which the Empire conducted transportation. This thesis examines these aspects to see how this took place. That examination is then taken further to look at how changes to the system of transportation impacted not only on the obvious relationship between the various Australian colonies, but also those colonies relations with others within the British Empire, and ultimately on how it impacted on relations between the colonies and the metropolis. While writers such as Hirst, Sturma, Neal, and Atkinson have examined aspects of convict impact on colonial society and its development, their work has been largely introspective with their focus on New South Wales prior to 1840. This thesis aims to broaden the examination to include the effects created by continued transportation to Van Diemen's Land and, later, Western Australia.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Gunn, TPV
Keywords: Prisoners, Penal transportation, Penal colonies, Convict labor
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2008 the author

Additional Information:

Thesis (PhD)--University of Tasmania, 2009. Includes bibliographical references. 1. A prison wall 14,000 kilometres thick -- 2. An old case through (Jane) New eyes -- 3. And then there were two -- 4. Strange ideas of freedom -- 5. A diversity of systems -- 6. Touched by the breath of penal atmosphere -- 7. The notorious Johnny May -- 8. Objectionable on the grounds of equity and policy -- 9. The duty of all true and loyal subjects -- 10. Transportation by stealth

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