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Theories, concepts and new perspectives

Bringing together leading authorities on Irish women and migration, this book offers a significant reassessment of the place of women in the Irish diaspora. It demonstrates the important role played by women in the construction of Irish diasporic identities, comparing Irish women's experience in Britain, Canada , New Zealand and the United States. The book considers how the Catholic Church could be a focal point for women's Irish identity in Britain. It examines how members of the Ladies' Orange Benevolent Association (LOBA) maintained a sense of Irish Protestant identity, focused on their associational life in female Orange lodges. The book offers a lens on Irish society, and on countries where they settled, and considerable scope for comparative analysis of the impact of different cultures and societies on women's lives. It reviews key debates in Transnational Studies (TS) and Diaspora Studies (DS) before discussing the particular contribution of DS in framing 1990s study of migrant and non-migrant Irish women. Feminist and queer theory scholarship in Irish DS has begun to address the gender and sexual politics of diaspora by attending to the dynamics of boundary expansion, queering and dissolution. The book suggests that religion can be both a 'bright' and a 'blurry' boundary, while examining how religious identities intersect with ethnicity and gender. It also includes the significance of the categories of gender and generation, and their intersection with ethnicity in the context of the official London St Patrick's Day Festival.

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D. A. J. MacPherson

moorland range which divides Lancashire from Yorkshire’.22 In this early bastion of female Orangeism an examination of the local press in Lancashire reveals that female Orange lodges were formed in that county as early as 1850. An account of a celebration in Bacup, east Lancashire, commemorating the 5 November (a key date in the Orange calendar given the organisation’s anti-Catholic profile and also the day when William of Orange landed at Brixham in 1688) suggests that the men and women present at the event had a separate organisational identity.23 Furthermore, in 1850

in Women and the Orange Order
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D. A. J. MacPherson

how women from Protestant and Unionist backgrounds could be active political agents. This chapter analyses the emergence of female Orange lodges in early twentieth-century Scotland, demonstrating how women’s entry into the masculinist world of the Orange Order was shaped by wider debate about suitable public roles for women. For women, participating in the Orange Order gave them access to the public world of Irish Protestant ethnic culture in Scotland. Orangemen perceived women as a useful tool in the battle to be considered part of the ‘respectable’ Scottish

in Women and the Orange Order
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Irish diaspora studies and women: theories, concepts and new perspectives
D. A. J. MacPherson and Mary J. Hickman

examines how members of the LOBA maintained a sense of Irish Protestant identity, focused on their associational life in female Orange lodges. While much theoretical literature has begun to recognise the gendered nature of diaspora formation, it does so largely within a framework dominated by considerations of family or personal networks that emphasise women’s gendered role within the private sphere. Instead, by examining associational culture we can begin to explore how women could engage in the public life of the migrant community and thereby help to construct a

in Women and Irish diaspora identities
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D. A. J. MacPherson

corners of the British world (not simply limited to the boundaries of the Empire), establishing, as Don MacRaild has shown, ‘a palpable ­institutional INTRODUCTION3 f­ ramework for diverse loyalists: from soldiers manning colonial frontiers to migrants in Britain, Canada, the USA and Australasia’.7 As this book demonstrates, while female Orange lodges did not quite follow the same straightforward trajectory of Irish origins and spread, women were involved in the Irish Orange Order within a few years of its foundation. The first evidence we have of women

in Women and the Orange Order
Orangewomen in Canada, c. 1890–1930
D. A. J. MacPherson

uphold the ‘true Protestant religion’, assist members ‘in times of sickness and distress’ and give ‘aid to the orphans of deceased members’. According to Cullum and Turk, women would ensure that ‘Popish doctrines’ would be resisted by educating the children of Canada ‘thoroughly in the Protestant Christian religion’, but their petition was defeated by ‘a large majority’.21 A year later, a resolution was put to the Grand Lodge meeting in St John, New Brunswick and a committee was appointed to consider the advisability of allowing female Orange lodges in Canada.22 The

in Women and Irish diaspora identities
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D. A. J. MacPherson

give ‘aid to the orphans of deceased members’. According to Cullum and Tulk, women would ensure that ‘Popish doctrines’ would be resisted by educating the children of Canada ‘thoroughly in the Protestant Christian religion’, but their petition was defeated by ‘a large majority’.7 A year later, a resolution was put to the Grand Lodge meeting in St John, New Brunswick, and a committee was appointed to consider the advisability of allowing female Orange lodges in Canada.8 The committee met the ladies in Hamilton and unanimously recommended that they be allowed to form

in Women and the Orange Order