Lecture sponsored by the St Andrews and Caledonian Society of Vancouver.
Dr Tanja Bueltmann, Northumbria University
“The Scots in Asia, c1820 to the Present: A Story of Transience, Networks, and Ethnic Association.”
In her talk, Dr Bueltmann will be looking at the history of Scottish presence in Asia. Scots have been making their way to Asia in larger numbers ever since the London-based East India Company began its operations in the Far East in the 17th century. As the Company's hold on trade came to an end in the early 19th century, private merchants also began setting up in larger numbers. Many of them where Scots. What most of these Scots had in common was that their time in Asia was characterised by a high degree of transience. Unlike Canada, locations in Asia never became principal settlement destinations for Scots. Asia was seen as a place of temporary sojourn, with time spent there for a specific purpose - and one that usually involved the aim of acquiring wealth. In this highly transient environment Scots drew extensively on networks for business and personal reasons. Ethnic association in clubs and societies was a key tool for Scots to establish and maintain these networks. Within this wider context this talk will explore the role of Scottish clubs and societies in Asia from c1820 to the present.
The event also includes a presentation by SFU History MA Student Grant Gillies and his talk "Atoms for Annan: An Analysis of Chapelcross, Scotland’s First Nuclear Station."