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Abandoned Women: Scottish Convicts Exiled Beyond the Seas

3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  33 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
From the crowded tenements of Edinburgh to the Female Factory nestling in the shadow of Mt Wellington, dozens of Scottish women convicts were exiled to Van Diemen's Land with their young children. This is a rich and evocative account of the lives of women at the bottom of society two hundred years ago. In the early nineteenth century, crofters and villagers streamed into t ...more
ebook, 232 pages
Published February 1st 2012 by Allen & Unwin
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Lauren K
For more reviews, check out my blog, The Australian Bookshelf

“‘Abandoned’ women, the Scottish convicts were called by an eminent twentieth-century Australian historian- worse than the English, even worse than the Irish. And the worst of the worst were shipped to the island of Van Diemen’s Land, later re-named Tasmania to cover its convict stain….

But who were these ‘abandoned’ women? What were their lives like in Scotland? And what happened to them in Australia?”
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This quote provides insight
Nov 06, 2015 Roisin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a fascinating read. Lucy Frost has done an amazing job of giving a voice to the convict women who sailed on the Atwick - most of whom were illiterate. I really like her style of writing - particularly when she shares her speculative thoughts on how the women may have felt. At times it seems unfathomable how these women and their children were treated... but then you look at how the Australian government is treating asylum seekers in offshore detention and you realise we haven't rea ...more
Beth Camp
Dec 31, 2012 Beth Camp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you are drawn to understanding the 19th Century, Frost's work to clarify class and gender distinctions affecting women transported to Van Diemen's Land (now Tasmania), make an excellent read. Frost presents her research in the context of reconstructed stories of individual women's lives.

A few of the women who landed in Hobart in 1838 successfully transitioned to colonial realities. Other women moved in and out of the Cascades Female Factory (a women's work prison) because they were insubordi
Jul 09, 2016 Just rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A riveting look at the lives of convict women arriving in VDL aboard the Atwick in early 1800's Australian convict history. Lovely insights from the author questioning and interpreting her theories in the gaps in the documents. Wonderful that she was able to find some of the descendants of these women to provide the missing links.
Portia Andrew
An interesting topic, but I felt the subject matter was not well handled. It felt as though the author had been requested to make the book longer and so filled the extra pages with subject matter already presented earlier in the text.
This is a fascinating insight into a little known part of Australia's convict past. Lucy Frost examines the lives of Scottish women, often young and illiterate, who were transported to Van Diemen's land (Tasmania) in the early 1800's.
The book takes the reader into the lives of some of the women & is obviously meticulously researched. I found the book easy to read and comprehend but occasionally became confused with which character was being examined.
Feb 25, 2015 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lucy Frost has an amazing ability to evoke empathy for the characters in this book, but manages to stick to only the historical records to do it. From the remnants of records of their lives, she can evoke feelings for them. A true gift as a writer.
Sue Shepherd
Apr 23, 2015 Sue Shepherd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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I really enjoyed this book as it is a part of our Australian history that is often forgotten. Pick it up and you won't be able to put it down
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