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‘I am the island of Niue, a small child that stands up to help the Kingdom of King George - Niue Island involvement in World War I’

March 25th, 2015


Historian Margaret Pointer discusses why 150 Niueans were accepted for service in the Māori Contingent, their experiences in Auckland, Egypt France and England and what life was lie for the men returning home.

Recorded at the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, 6 August 2014.


Aroha Harris: New Perspectives on Māori History

March 18th, 2015


Lecturer in History at the University of Auckland, Aroha Harris (Te Rarawa, Ngāpuhi) talks about new perspectives on Māori history. Her latest book 'Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History' is a collaboration between Harris, Judith Binney and Atholl Anderson and is published by Bridget Williams Books.

Recorded at Ministry for Culture and Heritage, 4 March 2015. Introduction by Ripeka Evans.


Coal- the Rise and Fall of King Coal in New Zealand

November 9th, 2014


Recorded on 5 November 2014. Historian Matthew Wright discusses his recent publication on the chequered history of coal.


Kate Hunter and Kirstie Ross: Holding On To Home

November 9th, 2014


Kate Hunter and Kirstie Ross discuss their recent publication Holding On To Home: New Zealand Stories and Objects of the First World War.

Recorded at the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, 1 October 2014.


New Zealand English: is there more here than meets the eye and ear?

November 9th, 2014

Recorded on 3 September 2014. Language expert Dianne Bardsley discusses geographic and social conditions that have produced the distinctive form of New Zealand English.


Judgments of all Kinds: Economic Policymaking in New Zealand 1945-84

November 9th, 2014

In this recording from 2 July 2014 Jim McAloon, Associate Professor of History, Victoria University, sheds light on the perceptions, ideas, and competing interests which shaped the views and actions of ministers and officials in managing a small externally dependent economy in the decades following the Second World War.


‘Captain Kindheart’s Crusade’

November 9th, 2014

In this talk recorded on 4 June 2014 Nancy Swarbrick discusses pet culture in New Zealand in the context of the international movement that began in the nineteenth century and still resonates today .


A Tasman tale?: New Zealand’s Depression and Australia, 1930-39

April 8th, 2014

Seminar presented by Malcolm McKinnon at the Ministry for Culture and Heritage on 2 April 2014.

In this talk Malcolm McKinnon discusses ways in which a trans-Tasman frame of reference expands our understanding of the economic depression in 1930s New Zealand. Investors moved their money, workers their labour, politicians their laws and economists their advice back and forth across the Tasman.

Malcolm McKinnon is a Wellington historian who is working on a study of the 1930s depression in New Zealand. He is a former writer and theme editor for Te Ara, was the editor of the New Zealand historical atlas (1997) and has published books on New Zealand foreign relations, immigration history and economic history.


The History of Gangs in New Zealand

March 6th, 2014

Seminar presented by Dr Jarrod Gilbert at the Ministry for Culture and Heritage on 5 March 2014.

Rape, murder, violence and drugs: gangs are synonymous with them all. Despite having a significant presence in New Zealand since the 1950s, though, our gangs have been under-researched and remain poorly understood. One reason for this is the difficulty of doing fieldwork.

This seminar looks at the problems of researching gangs, but also the problems encountered when research findings clash with popular and official understandings.

Between 2002 and 2010 Jarrod Gilbert undertook the most comprehensive study ever done on gangs in New Zealand, and in 2013 he published Patched: The History of Gangs in New Zealand. Patched won the Peoples Choice category at the 2013 New Zealand Post Book Awards and was a finalist for best non-fiction book.

Jarrod lectures at the University of Canterbury and is the lead researcher at Independent Research Solutions. He is currently working on a book titled Murder: A New Zealand History.


The White Ships: New Zealand’s First World War Hospital Ships

November 17th, 2013

Seminar presented by historian Gavin McLean at the Ministry for Culture and Heritage on 6 November 2013.

In 1915 the New Zealand government converted the liners Maheno and Marama into state-of-the art floating hospitals. Fitted out partly with funds raised by high profile public appeals, the ships had a busy war, eventually carrying 47,000 people. Painted distinctively in accordance with international requirements, they were the public face of our merchant marine's war, with the Maheno's crew making a direct civilian contribution to the Gallipoli campaign. Not everything went according to plan. There were tensions between the governor and ministers and shipboard disputes between army officers and mariners and between doctors and nurses. The political left also muttered about profiteering by the Union Steam Ship Company. Come along and hear the story of New Zealand's white ships.

Gavin McLean is a senior historian in the History Group of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. He is about to start on writing a book on New Zealand's First World War at sea.