Dr Barra Ó Donnabháin will soon present a free public lecture: Our experiment at Spike Island: archaeology of a Victorian convict depot in Ireland . Dr Donnabháin’s visit has been sponsored by the Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology, ahead of the 2017 conference.
The lecture will focus of the Spike Island Archaeological Project is the Victorian convict depot that, opened in 1847 at the height of the Great Irish Famine and closed in 1883. In the 1850s, the prison was the largest in the then United Kingdom. The convict depot was an important holding centre for convicts transported to Bermuda, Gibraltar and Van Diemen’s Land, and it operated during a critical period for the development of the modern prison system.
A combination of archival and archaeological research provides a means of investigating daily life in the prison and the triangle of relationships between convicts, warders and the institution. At a broader level, Spike Island is an important site for the exploration of complex questions of inequality and race, as well as the ambivalences and contradictions of empire.
The lecture will take place on 17th October, 5.30pm – 6.30pm at the Nicholson Museum, University of Sydney.
For more information, and to register please see: http://whatson.sydney.edu.au/events/published/our-experiment-at-spike-island