The introduction establishes the case for the Victorian periodical’s status as an intrinsically mobile form, which had an unrivalled capacity to both register British settler emigration and moderate its disruptive potential. It outlines the book’s identification of two distinct modes of periodical emigration literature. These are a ‘mainstream’ mode, which combined overlapping spatio-temporal models of home, nation, and settlement in order to offset settler mobility, and a range of feminist and radical ‘countercurrents’, which drew upon mainstream representations in order to challenge their dominant formations. The section on ‘Delineating Empire’ explains the rationale behind the book’s treatment of settler emigration as a distinct period of Victorian empire history and its focus on metropolitan print culture and perspectives. The section on ‘Journeys through the Archives’ examines the book’s methodologies, with particular attention to debates about digitization.
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