Blog Archives

Obituary – Barbara Murison

Dancing between order and chaos Novelist and children’s writer Barbara Else remembers Barbara Murison (b Wellington Nov 26, 1931, d Waikanae, May 7, 2017) Barbara Murison, librarian and life-long advocate of children’s reading, exemplified Margaret Mahy’s definition of the librarian

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Obituary – John McIntyre

Literacy and literature Julia Marshall, publisher at Gecko Press, raises a cheer for the cheerleader for children’s books, John McIntyre. John McIntyre of The Children’s Bookshop in Kilbirnie was a champion and friend of many. His wife and partner in

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Obituary — Mike Doyle

“A nice guy” C K Stead recalls the poet and critic Mike Doyle (1928-2016) Late in December, I received a phone call to say my former colleague, and friend of many years, Mike Doyle had died at home in Canada.

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Obituary — Sir James McNeish

“Half a stranger at home” Professor Paul Morris reflects on the work of Sir James McNeish (1931–2016) As a writer and a man, Jim McNeish was drawn to human life beyond the physical and social borders of the settled middle

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Sports writing as literature, Roger Robinson

Obituary

Roger Robinson, writer for the Runner’s World/Running Times website, puts the work of Norman Harris (1940-2015) into proper context.

We all know, and most of us enjoy, the drama of sport, the physical one that we watch on the field or track or pool, a narrative of high-pressure external action with an uncertain outcome. There’s another simultaneous drama that we can’t watch, but is equally compelling, the psychological one inside the mind of every competitor, a narrative of high-pressure internal action, also with an uncertain outcome. Only the very best sports writers are able to show both.

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Obituary — Jack Body

Harmonious sensuality Ross Harris recalls the life and work of fellow-composer Jack Body (1944-2015) Jack Body was born in the small North Island farming town of Te Aroha to parents with little interest in music. Even so, he was playing

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Obituary — W H (Bill) Oliver

A public intellectual An abridged version of Vincent O’Sullivan’s eulogy for historian and poet W H (Bill) Oliver at Old St Paul’s, Wellington, 18 September 2015 In the 1960s, so much that was important to New Zealand intellectual life happened

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Obituary — Campbell Smith

The world a stage

Gregory O’Brien recalls the life and work of artist and writer Campbell Smith (1925-2015)

The last time I saw Campbell Smith was in June a year ago. Friends from around the country had gathered at Hamilton’s Meteor Theatre to celebrate his life’s work and watch a performance of his play, Ida and I (aka Quite a Woman), a doco-drama – if such a thing can exist onstage – about the Waikato painter and arts-advocate, Ida Carey. It was both a glorious and a traumatic occasion.

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