‘They don’t do much in the cane-hole way’ Representing Caribbean Whiteness and the Irish Diaspora in Jamaica through visual and material culture.
My research harnesses post-colonial and archival theory to analyse the migration of the Irish diaspora to Jamaica.
Through re-examining and documenting this largely unknown and unaddressed history, my research traces the migration of the Irish from 1835 to 1842s and their arrival in Jamaica through narratively reconstructing this history through its archival traces. This research addresses fragmented identities via archival and postcolonial frames and the creolization of the Irish in Jamaica and the resulting legacies in contemporary Jamaica.
Through postcolonial theory and archival theory, I analyse and respond to the cultural legacies of colonialism and the human consequences of imperialism. And I seek to determine new historical narratives in response to the dominant “master narratives” of Western nationhood, identity and culture. The repercussions of colonial rule can still be felt today, and my work focuses on the rewriting of histories of the dominated “Other” and returning a voice, which had been rendered mute.
Situating my practice within the historiographic turn in contemporary art discourse and in relation to the archive, notably through the examination of unrecorded, private and disregarded histories, my multi-disciplinary approach to the research, the archival record and the archival image questions the legitimacy of the archive and falsification or lack within the recorded image and text.