Preliminary Programme

Wed 18 March
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Thu 19 March
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Fri 20 March
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Sat 21 March
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.00 - 17.00

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Wednesday 18 March 2020 14.00 - 16.00
Z-3 ETH03 Irish Migrant Communities in the Post-Famine Era: Networks, Mutuality, and the Collective Spirit
Van Wijkplaats 4, 004
Network: Ethnicity and Migration Chair: John Herson
Organizer: William Jenkins Discussant: John Herson
Pål Brunnström, Robert Nilsson Mohammadi : Do Labour Migrants need to know Swedish? Migration and Integration Policy and Praxis on the Municipal Level 1945–1970
This paper contributes to ongoing research on how European cities managed the influx of migrant workers, refugees and displaced persons from the 1940s to 1970s by focusing on the city of Malmö, Sweden. Municipalities is an often-overseen level in migration history, at least in the post-war period. Meanwhile, it was ... (Show more)
This paper contributes to ongoing research on how European cities managed the influx of migrant workers, refugees and displaced persons from the 1940s to 1970s by focusing on the city of Malmö, Sweden. Municipalities is an often-overseen level in migration history, at least in the post-war period. Meanwhile, it was on a local level that migrants found housing, work, and language-training. One aim of this paper is therefore to assemble the municipal level through studies of how municipal agencies, employers, trade-unions, landlords, and civil society organizations such as the tenants’ movement co-produced receptions of different migrant groups. In order to do so, the paper relies on archived materials, government and municipal reports, and social science reports from the examined period. The paper also wants to clarify the municipal level within the Swedish model for reception if migratory workers and refugees. The material is therefore interpreted in relation to historical knowledge about labour in and migration to Sweden, but also includes some comparative outlooks to cities in Germany and the UK. (Show less)

Dan Horner : Taking Root: The Irish Navigate Montreal’s Urban Fringe, 1850-1862
The Irish famine migration made a substantial demographic impact on Montreal at the end of the 1840s. Fleeing from the famine and social upheaval in Ireland, often via Liverpool, consumed much of the savings these migrants had accumulated. By the time that they arrived in British North America many were, ... (Show more)
The Irish famine migration made a substantial demographic impact on Montreal at the end of the 1840s. Fleeing from the famine and social upheaval in Ireland, often via Liverpool, consumed much of the savings these migrants had accumulated. By the time that they arrived in British North America many were, at the very best, nearing a state of material destitution. Montreal was a raucous port city on the precipice of industrialization, and there was little in the way of a social safety net to assist members of this migrant community. The vast majority of migrants took up residence in the ramshackle suburbs on the city’s western urban fringe. These suburbs became the site of a dynamic Irish community that, over the course of the second half of the nineteenth century, saw a well-documented process of upward social mobility lift many out of poverty. My paper will examine the relationship between the Irish community and the urban fringe in the decade that followed the famine migration. Looking at a variety of government documents, judicial records, and the city’s Irish newspaper- The Vindicator- the paper will examine how the urban fringe was crucial to the strategies adopted by the community. It provided access to affordable real estate, employment in factories, and a geographically cohesive ethnic enclave. Taking root in this urban fringe also came with challenges. Infrastructure remained underdeveloped, and there was less access to important municipal services like policing and fire services. By tracing how the Irish community navigated these benefits and challenges, this paper aims to add nuance to our understanding of how the Irish famine migrants laid the groundwork for upward social mobility in the decade following their arrival in British North America. (Show less)

William Jenkins : Stanleyites and Dummeronians: Irish Immigrants, Street Culture, and Community Formation in Mid-Victorian Toronto
As Irish immigration to Canada gathered momentum in the 1830s and 1840s, the colonial province entered a new era of urban governance, especially where civic justice was concerned. Moral or public order offences related to drinking and vagrancy were endured and accepted until the early 1840s; by the time of ... (Show more)
As Irish immigration to Canada gathered momentum in the 1830s and 1840s, the colonial province entered a new era of urban governance, especially where civic justice was concerned. Moral or public order offences related to drinking and vagrancy were endured and accepted until the early 1840s; by the time of the late-1840s famine migrations, the situation was notably different. In the growing city of Toronto already well-known for its strongly Protestant and Orange social flavour, the sense of an Irish cohort that was at once poverty-stricken and deviant was felt, seen, and heard not only on streets and in neighbourhoods but also behind the doors of courthouses, asylums, and jails.
This paper investigates the ways in which Toronto’s poorest Irish engaged with questions of community and belonging at the scale of the street. By the 1860s, an increasingly partisan and sensationalist local media offered semi-regular commentaries on the lives of inhabitants of identifiably “Hibernian” streets such as Stanley and Dummer in their various “city news” and “police court” columns. Combining the details of such columns with police, jail, and charitable records offers revealing insights on the structures, hierarchies, and solidarities of these street-level cultures that coalesced around Irish ethnicity, Catholic religious identity, and notions of masculinity and femininity derived largely from immigrants’ rural and small-town antecedents. Within these street cultures, self-styled “mayors” acted as networking power brokers, while newspaper depictions of local rivalries invited comparison with Irish faction-fighting traditions, in turn reinforcing already existing stereotypes of Irish Catholic immigrants rooted in poverty, alcohol abuse and violence. While such rivalries indicate intra-group identity fragmentation across city locations, the paper also addresses how the lives of residents within such localities could still range between spirited co-operation and friendless alienation. (Show less)



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