In Migrations Rod Edmond traces the journeys of his Scottish forebears as they separately made their way to New Zealand. The migration story begins with Charles Murray leaving Aberdeenshire in 1884 to become a missionary on the island of Ambrym. On the other side of Scotland, Catherine McLeod and her family had already abandoned their small coastal croft and sailed for Tasmania.
Encounters in Scottish and Pacific villages, a reconciliation ceremony, visits to country churches in New Zealand, and the shock of a city’s history transformed by earthquake – all are woven into an exploration of ‘migration’, of what it is and what it means in our lives. Evocations of place are quietly infused with an understanding of the past, subtly shifting perceptions of identity for current generations.
Emeritus Professor at the University of Kent in Canterbury, Rod Edmond has published in the fields of Victorian and postcolonial writing, and in the history and literature of empire. In 1998 he was the joint winner of the Trevor Reese Memorial Prize for Imperial History for Representing the South Pacific: Colonial Discourse from Cook to Gauguin.