Historiography and context
in Personal narratives of Irish and Scottish migration, 1921–65
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In historical and contemporary terms, Ireland and Scotland have extensive pedigrees in relation to migration. Compared with the nineteenth century, the historiography of twentieth-century migration from Ireland and Scotland is somewhat thin, a surprising feature given the numbers involved. Assessment of agent activity is a key element in the historiography of Scottish migration, but is less extensively covered for the Irish moving abroad. Within a Scottish context, the focus has generally been on Highland Gaelic migrants. The schemes for New Zealand and Australia were similar but Australia's differed in that Britain contributed equally to the costs incurred and married migrants could apply. Sporadic nomination, together with schemes such as the Empire Settlement Act, enabled Scottish and Irish migrants from the north to avail themselves of subsidised fares. By 1952, the Irish flow significantly altered towards settlement in Britain, with four-fifths of migrants from independent Ireland moving there.


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