Collecting Looerryminer's ‘Testimony’: Aboriginal Women, Sealers, and Quaker Humanitarian Anti-Slavery Thought and Action in the Bass Strait Islands

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6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In 1832 British Quakers James Backhouse and George Washington Walker travelled under concern to the antipodean colonies on a mission sponsored by the Religious Society of Friends. This article examines Backhouse and Walker's mission to witness the testimony of Looerryminer and other Aboriginal women who had lived with sealers in the Bass Strait Islands. It argues that this investigative journey is best comprehended in the context of the long tradition of Quaker transimperial travel under concern and particularly their abolitionist witnessing undertaken from the late eighteenth century and its associated texts with their distinctive form, language and repertoire. Urging that we read along the grain of the archive in line with Ann Stoler, the article explores the travel and curious translation of humanitarian abolitionist sentiment, text, and action across and between colonies of settlement, and the various species of slavery that were imagined, constructed and examined by Quaker humanitarians in this Age of Reform.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-33
Number of pages21
JournalAustralian Historical Studies
Volume45
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Looerryminer
  • James Backhouse
  • George Washington Walker
  • Quakers
  • Bass Strait Islands
  • Aboriginal Women

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