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Locating Chinese WomenHistorical Mobility between China and Australia$
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Kate Bagnall and Julia T. Martínez

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9789888528615

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888528615.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HONG KONG SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hongkong.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hong Kong University Press, 2022. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HKSO for personal use.date: 03 July 2022

Missing Ruby

Missing Ruby

(p.151) 7 Missing Ruby
Locating Chinese Women

Antonia Finnane

Hong Kong University Press

In July 1925, the body of a young Chinese-Australian woman was dragged out of the harbour in Fremantle, Western Australia. An inquest ensued, leading to the trial of her husband for murder. From press reports and legal documents concerning the case emerge details of family life in the small Australian Chinese community of between-the-wars Perth. Drawing on Sigurdur Gylfi Magnusson’s concept of the singularization of history, the chapter considers the implications of research on one person, or one family, for a subfield such as ‘Chinese-Australian history’, or ‘the history of Chinese women in Australia’.  Ruby’s was a singular story. How was it Chinese? How was it Australian? Where is the historiographical space for it to be recounted?

Keywords:   Chinese Australians, Ruby Leewood, 1920s Perth, domestic violence, family formation, singularization of history

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