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Tangata ora, Matariki Williams

Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History

Atholl Anderson, Judith Binney and Aroha Harris
Bridget Williams Books, $100.00,
ISBN 9781927131411

The final chapter of the weighty Tangata Whenua is titled “Tangata Whenua, Tangata Ora”, and the book could just as easily have been called that. Throughout the three millennia that are chronicled, an overwhelming theme of the book is that Māori endure, adapt, and live. Any student of New Zealand history will have heard the unfortunate phrase uttered in 1856 by physician and politician Dr Isaac Featherston, that it was the duty of Europeans to “smooth down … [the] dying pillow” for Māori. His was a viewpoint brought forth by the belief that the indigenous population could not withstand European conquest and disease. What more of a testament to Māori endurance can there be than the release of a book detailing the way in which Māori live, nigh on 150 years after that phrase was uttered?

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Posted in History, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

The museum as a book, Tim Walker

Take These With You When You Leave: Treasures of the Archive
Georgina White
MTG Hawke’s Bay
ISBN 9780992259600

Architecture of the Heart
Lucy Hammonds and Douglas Lloyd Jenkins
MTG Hawke’s Bay
ISBN 9780992259624

Ūkaipō – ō tātou whakapapa: The Identity of the Hapu of Hawke’s Bay
Migoto Eria
MTG Hawke’s Bay, $49.00,
ISBN 9780992259617

The challenges of in-house museum publishing are numerous. Museums are not typically well-resourced, and the decision to focus time and (usually ratepayer) funding on publications inevitably comes at the expense of the same resources being directed to other museum projects or programmes. At the same time, the number of individual visitors to museums is generally small, and the percentage who will buy a book smaller still – meaning the economics of ultra-niche publishing and its efficacy in reaching wider audiences are uncertain at best. As a former art gallery curator and museum director, I was keen to understand what fresh approaches MTG Hawke’s Bay (formerly the Hawke’s Bay Art Gallery and Museum) would bring to this vexing area, under the directorship of published author Douglas Lloyd Jenkins.

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Posted in Art, History, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

Mishmash history, Nepia Mahuika

Beyond Betrayal, Trouble in the Promised Land – Restoring the Mission to Maori Keith Newman Penguin, $45.00, ISBN 9780143570516 Most Maori I know have a different view of the past to the nation-building rhetoric that inhabits the majority of mainstream

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Posted in History, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

Singing in tune, David Round

Treaty of Waitangi Settlements Nicola R Wheen and Janine Hayward (eds) Bridget Williams Books with the New Zealand Law Foundation, $50.00, ISBN 9781927131381 This book contains a dozen essays on aspects of Treaty of Waitangi settlements. Three cover their context,

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Posted in History, Maori, Non-fiction, Politics & Law and Review

One in every home, Hilary Stace

The Raupo Dictionary of Modern Maori  P M Ryan Raupo, $60.00, ISBN 9780143567899 Every household and office in Aotearoa New Zealand will have times when they need an easy-to-use Maori dictionary. As more te reo words and phrases drift into

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Posted in Language, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

Songs not lost, Nepia Mahuika

Nga Moteatea: An Introduction/He Kupu Arataki Jane McRae and Heni Jacob (trans) Auckland University Press, $34.99, ISBN 9781869404901   Jane McRae’s Nga Moteatea: An Introduction is a small book that seems longer because the comprehensive Maori translation by Heni Jacob

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Posted in History, Maori, Music, Non-fiction and Review

When worlds collide, Jeffrey Paparoa Holman

Guns and Utu: A Short History of the Musket Wars Matthew Wright Penguin Books, $42.00, ISBN 9780143565659 From the time the first accounts of New Zealand’s native inhabitants began to reach Europe, Maori pugnacity and military prowess have featured high

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Posted in History, Maori, Non-fiction, Review and War

Closing the spaces between, Filma Anne Punakitere Phillips

Words Between Us/ He Korero: First Maori-Pakeha Conversations on Paper Alison Jones and Kuni Jenkins Huia, $45.00, ISBN 9781869694784   Aotearoa/New Zealand as a place of encounter, a zone of contact and kanohi ki te kanohi. Face-to-face meetings during the

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Posted in Essays, History, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

The big picture, Nepia Mahuika

Nga Tini Whetu: Navigating Maori Futures Mason Durie Huia, $49.99, ISBN 9781869694524   Unlike many in the steady stream of publications about things Maori, Mason Durie’s latest book, Nga Tini Whetu: Navigating Māori Futures, turns its attention not to the

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Posted in Lecture, Maori, Non-fiction and Review

Determining rangatiratanga, Filma Anne Phillips

Maori and the State: Crown-Maori Relations in New Zealand/Aotearoa, 1950-2000 Richard S Hill Victoria University Press, $92.99, ISBN 9780864736116   Aotearoa/New Zealand 1950-2000 now seems like a foreign country. Of course it isn’t an unfamiliar country, in part because the

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Posted in Maori, Non-fiction and Review
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