Hear about convict women in the next Port Arthur Talk
In the nineteenth century, 25,000 women were transported from Great Britain to Australia to serve as “tamers and breeders” following their arrest for petty theft, for pilfering small items as the only means to survive, other than prostitution.
After serving punishments that far exceeded the scope of their crimes, these pioneer heroines, through sheer force of will, became the heart and soul of a new nation. American historian Deborah Swiss will discuss the thousands of convict women transported to Australia in a talk entitled Unlikely heroes: Convict maids in Van Diemen's Land.
Deborah Swiss is the author of The Tin Ticket: The Heroic Journey of Australia's Convict Women. Her book focuses on three remarkable survivors who were transported to Van Diemen’s Land -- ordinary women who lived extraordinary lives as they triumphed over tragedy, relying on their resiliency and strength alongside friendships with one another.
It also tells the tale of Elizabeth Gurney Fry, a Quaker reformer who helped them. The Tin Ticket has been optioned for a feature film by EVN Productions and won runner-up honours in 2011 for Best Non-Fiction book, awarded by the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Swiss holds her doctorate from Harvard University.
After Deborah’s talk, Boston singer/songwriter Digney Fignus will perform "All for Love," a song he wrote to honour the convict women and survivors everywhere.
Note that copies of Deborah's book will be available for sale and signing after the talk.
Wednesday 9 May, 2012, 5.30pm at the Junior Medical Officer’s Conference Room, Port Arthur Historic Site
For more information please call 6251 2324
Port Arthur Talk leaflet - Deborah Swiss
Deborah Swiss will also be speaking at the Cascades Female Factory Historic Site on Monday 7 May at 6pm. Seating is limited so please email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a place.
In the nineteenth century, 25,000 women were transported from Great Britain to Australia.