What does a good migrant look like? How do migration officials identify ‘good’ migrants and how do potential migrants navigate this process? This paper will explore the development of early twentieth century migration laws and bureaucracies in South Africa and Australia in order to address these questions. It will particularly focus on Jewish and female migrants, drawing on a range of official migratory documentation and private diaries of those who sought to regulate and control the migratory process: as migrants, interested charities, and bureaucrats.
Rachel Bright is Senior Lecturer in Global and Imperial History at Keele University, UK. She specialises in migration and identity in the British settler colonies, especially South Africa and Australia. Her PhD from King’s College, London was followed by a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of East Anglia, and lecturing at the London School of Economics and Goldsmith’s College, London. Rachel is currently a Visiting Fellow at ANU researching female naturalisation in the early twentieth century, with funding from Keele University’s Institute of Social Inclusion and an Australian Bicentennial Research Fellowship from the Menzies Centre of Australian Studies, King’s College London.