A transnational or translocal history of Chinese prostitution in 1880s Darwin (520)
Darwin in northern Australia is often regarded as standing outside of mainstream of Australian history and having more in common with Asia. One lesser known aspect of Darwin history that appears to confirm this framing was the immigration in mid-1880s of a small group of Chinese women as sex workers. Very little is known of their lives in Darwin but using a micro-history approach it is possible to gain a sense of their lived experiences. Understanding the broader circumstances of their immigration requires, however, a transnational, or rather a trans-local approach. The beauty of the trans-local approach is that it combines the micro and the macro but avoids the generalizing tendencies of earlier comparative histories. This paper will consider this case study of Darwin women as a way to explore the methodology of translocal history.