New Zealand's empire

Edited by Katie Pickles and Catharine Coleborne

New Zealand's empire


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-9153-7
  • Pages: 288
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £85.00
  • Published Date: November 2015
  • BIC Category: Australasia, POLITICAL SCIENCE / Colonialism & Post-Colonialism, POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / Diplomacy, HISTORY / Australia & New Zealand, Humanities / Australasian & Pacific history, Humanities / Colonialism & imperialism, History, Colonialism & imperialism, Australasian & Pacific history
  • Series: Studies in Imperialism


This edited collection investigates New Zealand's history as an imperial power, and its evolving place within the British Empire. It revises and expands the history of empire within, to and from New Zealand by looking at the country's spheres of internal imperialism, its relationship with Australia, its Pacific empire and its outreach to Antarctica.

The book critically revises our understanding of the range of ways that New Zealand has played a role as an imperial power, including the cultural histories of New Zealand inside the British Empire, engagements with imperial practices and notions of imperialism, the special significance of New Zealand in the Pacific region, and the circulation of ideas of empire both through and inside New Zealand over time.

The essays in this volume span social, cultural, political and economic history, and in testing the concept of New Zealand's empire, the contributors take new directions in both historiographical and empirical research.


'At the edge of empire, at "home" with the British or somewhere in the Pacific? Pickles and Coleborne take up the puzzle of New Zealand's Empire with freshness and surprise. Both the questions and answers are new, rewarding readers with an insightful and original excursion.'
Charlotte Macdonald, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand

'The book rewards its readers with a series of original, varied, and sometimes intriguing essays into particular dimensions.the editors succeed in their stated aim of opening up discussion as to how New Zealand's own empire might be conceived.'
Vincent O'Malley, H-Empire July 2016

'Scholars who have been following the historiography of British settler colonialism overthe past few decades can testify to the significant contributions made by historians of New Zealand to thisbody of work. New Zealand's Empire,though, takes that work in a new and intriguing direction, as it asks questionsabout multiple forms of empire in New Zealand's history.'
Cecilia Morgan, University of Toronto, Australian HistoricalStudies, 48, 2017


Introduction: New Zealand's Empire - Katie Pickles and Catharine Coleborne
Part I: 'Empire at home'
1. Te Karere Maori and the defence of Empire, 1855-60 - Kenton Storey
2. An imperial icon Indigenised: the Queen Victoria Memorial at Ohinemutu - Mark Stocker
3. 'Two branches of the brown Polynesians': ethnographic fieldwork, colonial governmentality and the 'dance of agency' - Conal McCarthy
Part II: Imperial mobility
4. Travelling the Tasman world: travel writing and narratives of transit - Anna Johnston
5. Law's mobility: vagrancy and imperial legality in the trans-Tasman colonial world, 1860s-1914 - Catharine Coleborne
6. 'The World's Fernery': New Zealand, fern albums, and nineteenth-century fern fever - Molly Duggins
Part III: New Zealand's Pacific Empire
7. From Sudan to Samoa: imperial legacies and cultures in New Zealand's rule over the Mandated Territory of Western Samoa - Patricia O'Brien
8. 'Fiji is really the Honolulu of the Dominion': tourism, empire and New Zealand's Pacific, c.1900-35 - Frances Steel
9. Empire in the eyes of the beholder: New Zealand in the Pacific through French eyes - Adrian Muckle 1900-55
10. War surplus? New Zealand and American children of Indigenous women in Samoa, the Cook Islands, and Tokelau - Judith A. Bennett
Part IV Inside and outside Empire
11. Official occasions and vernacular voices: New Zealand's British Empire and Commonwealth Games, 1950-90 - Michael Dawson
12. Australia as New Zealand's western frontier, 1965-95 - Rosemary Baird and Philippa Mein Smith
13. Southern outreach: New Zealand claims Antarctica from the 'heroic era' to the twenty-first century - Katie Pickles
14. A radical reinterpretation of New Zealand history: apology, remorse and reconciliation - Giselle Byrnes


Katie Pickles is Professor of History at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand

Catharine Coleborne is Professor of History at the University of Waikato, New Zealand

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