Research Seminars

Research seminars, held twice yearly, are open to all members and to the general public.



Spring Seminar, 20th October 2019:  Call for papers

Topic: "A more hopeless class of subjects?" Convict Women at the New Norfolk Asylum

In 1859, the Commissioners of the Hospital for the Insane at New Norfolk wrote, ‘It must be borne in mind that a large majority of the patients … confined in the asylum have been of the convict class, the offspring of diseased parents, inheriting in very many cases a defective intellect, brought up from the earliest childhood in misery and vice, and leading in after years a life of sensual debauchery and crime, resulting in enfeeblement alike of body and mind – a more hopeless class of subjects it would be impossible to collect together in one institution’ (cit Gowlland, Troubled Asylum, p.54)

Our next seminar will explore the lives of convict women admitted to the New Norfolk Asylum: why were they admitted? How long were they there? How many died there? What do we learn about the treatment and institutionalisation of convict women from their time in the Asylum? We are also interested in hearing about those convict women who worked at the Asylum.

Would you like to give a 15-minute paper on any aspect of the experience of convict women at the New Norfolk Asylum?  If you are interested, please contact Robyn Everist at by 20th June, 2019.

Registrations for the seminar will open late July 2019.  Venue will be the Hobart Town Hall.

New Norfolk Asylum 1868

Save the dates:


Spring Seminar, 20th October, 2019.  Topic: "A more hopeless class of subjects?" Convict Women at the New Norfolk Asylum



Past Seminar Programs: 


Spring 2010: Populating the Ross Female Factory

Autumn 2010: Female Factories: Who worked there and why?


Referencing suggestion for seminar papers:

[Author], '[Title of paper'], unpublished paper presented at  FCRC Seminar, [seminar date].

or if published:

[Author], ['Title of paper'],  paper presented at FCRC Seminar, [seminar date],