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Title: Circulating tropical nature : an historical geography of the botanical gardens on Jamaica, 1774-1907
Author: Taylor, Duncan
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis examines the historical geography of the botanical gardens of Jamaica between 1774 and 1907. My original contribution to knowledge is two fold. On the one hand, it is empirical - a history of these sites has not been written. On the other hand, I suggest that examining sites of colonial endeavour away from the metropole shows a more detailed, complex and messy story that is indicative of the contingent and fallible relationships that strained to hold empire together. I illustrate how the tropics were articulated on the island and elsewhere in the British Empire. To do this archival material has been viewed with an eye to hermeneutic analysis. In particular the thesis refuses both analytically and methodologically a focus on Kew Gardens, London, Britain or Europe as a 'centre' to Jamaica's 'periphery'. I shine an optic onto the lives of many who passed through and interacted with these botanical sites and seek to interpret the consequent representations of the politico-meteorological 'tropical' island. Coming from a tradition of work that emphasises the importance of place, this study considers eight locations where public botanical gardens were established on Jamaica. I reflect on the context and discourse that formed, shaped, empowered and disenfranchised these spaces and those who interacted with them.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available