Harriet Clisby’s 'Sketches of Australia': travel writing and colonial refigurations in Boston’s Woman’s Journal

Stevenson, Ana (2018) Harriet Clisby’s 'Sketches of Australia': travel writing and colonial refigurations in Boston’s Woman’s Journal. Women's History Review, 27 (5). pp. 837-857.

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Abstract

During the late nineteenth century, the British-born Australian physician Harriet Clisby became involved in the vibrant social reform circles of Boston, Massachusetts. Her ‘Sketches of Australia’, a journalistic series of travel writings, were published in the reform-oriented Woman’s Journal in 1873. This series provides insight into the discursive construction of Australian colonial society in a transnational context. Thematically, the ‘Sketches’ explored questions of geography, culture, class, labor, ethnicity, race, and gender, often embracing popular scientific discourses about race and universalist visions of women’s rights. While such perspectives were common among Anglophone social reformers of the era, Clisby also portrayed Australia as a multiracial nation of immigrants rather than as a collection of white settler colonies. By making colonial Australia accessible for a specifically American readership, the ‘Sketches’ also established a sense of a budding international relationship between Australia and the United States prior to the twentieth century.

Item ID: 67522
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1747-583X
Copyright Information: © 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2021 00:31
FoR Codes: 43 HISTORY, HERITAGE AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 4303 Historical studies > 430302 Australian history @ 20%
43 HISTORY, HERITAGE AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 4303 Historical studies > 430303 Biography @ 40%
43 HISTORY, HERITAGE AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 4303 Historical studies > 430321 North American history @ 40%
SEO Codes: 13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1307 Understanding past societies > 130703 Understanding Australia’s past @ 40%
13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1302 Communication > 130201 Communication across languages and culture @ 20%
13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1307 Understanding past societies > 130706 Understanding the past of the Americas @ 40%
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