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Monthly Archives: November 2012

Practice Conference Presentations

Megan Ellison and Lachy Paterson of Te Tumu are two thirds of the panel “He Kōrero, he Tuhituhinga: Utilizing Indigneous-Language Texts”, presenting at the upcoming Pacific History Conference in Wellington later next week.

They will be giving their presentations as a “dry-run” at 2pm on Monday (3 December) in Te Iringa Kōrero (R3S10) on the third floor of Te Tumu.

Lachy’s topic is “He Reo Wāhine: Māori Women’s Voices from the Nineteenth Century” which discusses Angela Wanhalla’s and his research on Māori women’s voices in the archives.  Megan’s topic, “Te Ripa Tauārai o kā Reo e Rua: the Crossroads of Two Languages”, investigates some of the texts she will be using for her doctoral study.

If interested, please feel free to come along.

Presenters Perform

A very successful symposium on Colonial Performance was held at the Hocken Collections Seminar Room on Monday, November 19th. Presenters gave illuminating talks on a wide range of colonial performances from Irish drama in Dunedin, to Maori performers in Manhattan, to the theatre of the Dunedin police court, among other topics.

Barbara Brookes gives the opening presentation at the symposium

Barbara Brookes, who convened the day-long symposium, kicked off the event with a discussion of touring medical lecturer Dr. Anna Longshore Potts.

Barbara was followed by two presentations on the theatre scene in Dunedin. Lisa Warrington invited us into Dunedin’s first theatre, a converted horse stable, and Peter Kuch drew attention to the importance of Irish drama in the development of Dunedin theatre during the 1860s. Kirstine Moffatt entertained us all with stories about the amateur pianist, who appeared in private homes, at concerts held in church halls, and barns.

Unlike Richard John Seddon, who spoke for hours at a time, Tom Brooking used a mere 20 minutes to describe the role of performance in colonial politics. At the same time he revealed some of the popular prejudices against Seddon in New Zealand’s historiography. Rosi Crane drew upon her doctoral research in the history of science to show how university professors used their role as public intellectuals to advance scientific understanding, for example in the field of evolution.

Bronwyn Dalley gave a vivid account of the many re-inventions of ‘urban investigator’, free-thinker and spiritualist, Lotti Wilmott in 1880s Christchurch. The tensions between ethnographic ideas about race and “primitive” societies were put to the test by the appearance of Maori performers at New York City’s Hippodrome in 1909-10. Marianne Schultz, from Auckland University, also explored how the leaders of the US suffragette movement used the case of Maori women, who had the right to vote, in their own campaigns for enfranchisement. Michelle Willyams also looked at Maori performers and performance, highlighting the hybrid nature of the musical repertoire developed by Reverend Seamer’s Waiata Maori Choir in the 1920s and 1930s.

Fabia Fox preparing to present.

University of Otago MA student Fabia Fox walked us through the streets of nineteenth-century Dunedin, and into the backyards of homes in the ‘Devil’s Half-Acre’ famous for its criminal underclass. Their exploits were often played out in the Dunedin police court, and relayed to a voyeuristic reading public through the column of the court reporter. In contrast, John Stenhouse embellished his talk on the Rev. Rutherford Waddell with his own rendition of excerpts from his famous sermon on the sin of cheapness. Prof. Lyn Tribble (English) eloquently wrapped up the day, drawing together the various themes into what she described as an ecology of performance.

Imperial Science Lecture

Imperial-Science1   In association with a symposium on the naturalist John Buchanan, a public lecture will be held at the Hutton Theatre, Otago Museum at 5.30, 29 November.  Dr Jim Endersby will be talking on “Imperial Science: the Invention of New Zealand’s plants”.

Research Seminar

Professor Isabel Hofmeyr (University of Witwatersrand), author of The Portable Bunyan: A Transnational History of The Pilgrim’s Progress (2004), will give a research seminar co-sponsored by the Centre for Research on Colonial Culture and the Centre for the Book on Monday, December 3rd. Her talk, ‘Gandhi’s South African newspaper Indian Opinion: Towards a Theory of the Imperial Textual Commons’, will take place in the Humanities Division Meeting Room from 10.00 AM until 11.15AM. Please join us for what will be a fascinating research seminar.

Webs of Empire

Tony’s Ballantyne’s new book, Webs of Empire, is capturing the attention of New Zealand media. Listen to Tony talk about his new book on Waatea News to find out how Gore and Chicago are connected, the important links between Māori and Asia, and the processes and practices of colonial knowledge production.

Colonial Performances Abstracts

A feast of enticing papers are on offer at the Colonial Performances Symposium, which takes place at the Hocken Collections on Monday November 19th.

Feel free to read the Abstracts, which are now available.


Tony Ballantyne’s new book

Join us to celebrate the publication of Tony Ballantyne’s new book. It’s being launched by Professor Charlotte Macdonald and Bridget Williams Books on Monday, November 12th in the Dunningham Suite, Dunedin Public Library at 5.30.

Commanding an Audience

A research symposium concerned with colonial performance will take place at the Hocken Collections on Monday, November 19th.

Have a look at the Symposium Programme here.

This is a free event, but numbers are limited! If you are interested in attending contact Professor Barbara Brookes


Colonial Objects Conference

Registration for the Colonial Objects Conference (11-13 February 2013) is now open.  To start the process click here.


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