Green lawns in the forground with penitentiary ruins and Port Arthur in background
Logo of Port Arthur Historic Site Managment Authority

Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority

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Detail of the top of the Gordon window.
Detail of the Gordon window showing General Gordon

19th-Century Studies Group

Multidisciplinary research

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Landscapes of Production and Punishment: the Tasman Peninsula 1830–77

ARC Research Project

Landscapes of Production and Punishment is testing the historical record against varying depictions that suggest convict Australia was a place of brutality, repression and exploitation, or else a relatively free society where exiles enjoyed higher living standards and better life opportunities than the British and Irish working poor.

The project aims to find out why there is this dichotomy. It will also chart how convict labour management practices on the Tasman Peninsula evolved to impact and influence:

  • Changes in the ideologies of convict management, reform and punishment regimes
  • Technologies, processes and physical organisation of craft, industry and labour
  • The shape of an iconic Australian convict landscape
  • The life and work experiences of convicts, including their post-incarceration careers.

The research will contextualize these impacts and influences in relation to other Australian and international landscapes of labour extraction.

This interdisciplinary project is a collaboration between the School of Humanities’ history and archaeology disciplines — including the Global Colonialism project — and the Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority.

Read more about the project.

Institutional Affiliations

Australian Research Council logo University of Tasmania logo University of Liverpool logoPort Arthur Historic Sites logo