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Author Archives: Angela Wanhalla

Forthcoming Conferences: Law, History, Film

A number of associations have released CfPs in the past month, including the New Zealand Historical Association, the Australian and New Zealand Law and History Society (ANZLHS), plus the Law and Society Association of Australia and New Zealand (LSAANZ).

From 28 November to 1 December, the Biennial New Zealand Historical Association Conference will be held at the University of Auckland on the theme: Tāmaki Herenga Waka: Where Histories Meet, celebrating Auckland as a meeting place of people, of culture and of ideas from throughout New Zealand and across the world. The Call for Papers and details about the keynote speakers can be found on the conference website. Do note that the submission deadline for abstracts is 28 July.

The University of Otago’s Legal Issues Centre is co-hosting LSAANZ this year in association with Te Pokapū Take Ture and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga. The Call for Papers closes on 14 July and the conference will take place from 6-9 December in Dunedin.

A few days later the ANZLHS Conference will take place at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch on 14-16 December. The conference theme is: “Legal and social change – gradual evolution or punctuated equilibrium?” This conference theme draws on evolutionary theory about how species form, and asks whether changes in the law and in the effects of particular laws on society occur through a gradual process of incremental change or through periods of relative stasis with intervening major shifts.

Inquiries or submissions of papers should be accompanied by a brief abstract and biography and sent to the programme co-ordinator, Professor Jeremy Finn by 21 August. Keynote speakers for the conference include Professors Charlotte McDonald (Victoria University of Wellington); Kjell Modeer (Lund University), and Amanda Nettelbeck (University of Adelaide) and Dr Te Maire Tau (Ngāi Tahu Research Centre, University of Canterbury).

CRoCC is also running a symposium on colonial film in association with Ngā Taonga, Wellington, from 13-14 July. The programme and the registration portal can be accessed via the below.

Film in the Colony Symposium




Archival Files and Knowledge Production Workshop

The Centre hosted a very successful workshop on May 30 & 31, organised by Barbara Brookes, addressing the creation of archival files, the way individual lives get written into such files, the serendipity (or otherwise) of the survival of such paperwork, how it gets ordered, and how such files might make it possible to create claims on the state. Participants also considered the origins of files in book-keeping work and their ongoing life in the digital realm and asked how different forms of accessibility might alter our engagement with files and what might be lost when the original ordering becomes subservient to digital imperatives, such as the great demand by genealogists.

Sally Swartz, James Dunk and Rebecca Lenihan

The writing of history is shaped by its sources. Workshop participants spent two days thinking about how those sources shape narratives within institutions, at the national level, and for the individual. Jane McCabe, from the Department of History and Art History at Otago, linked an institution, a number of countries and personal narratives in her paper which is based on an archive that continues to shape lives in the present. Rosi Crane, an Honorary Research Fellow at Otago Museum and a graduate of the Department of History and Art History at Otago, who has been working on the project for Barbara, attended and presented her thoughts near the end of the workshop.

Rosi Crane takes notes as Jane McCabe discusses her paper while Kate Hunter and James Moran listen attentively.

All workshop participants considered this on-going relationship with archives, how historians use them to create coherent stories and how paper trails both serve to highlight some kinds of knowledge and elide others. The Centre was delighted to welcome to the Otago campus James Dunk from the University of Sydney, James Moran from the University of Prince Edward Island, Sally Swartz from the University of Capetown, Kate Hunter and Rebecca Lenihan (with Charlotte Macdonald there in spirit) from Victoria University of Wellington. and Volker Hess, from the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, who joined the workshop by zoom for three hours of intense discussion of pre-circulated papers.

Volker Hess, who joined the workshop via zoom.

Congratulations to Barbara Brookes on putting together a fantastic programme of speakers. We look forward to seeing the publication of these papers in a special journal issue in the near future.

Register for Film in the Colony

Registration is now open for the Film in the Colony Symposium, which will be held at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, Wellington, on 13 & 14 July.

Full Registration: $100 (General) $85 (Student)

Daily Registration: $70 (General) $55 (Student)

Conference Dinner: $45

Please be aware because of room capacity, registration is limited to 90 people.

You can register via the Film in the Colony website below.

Film in the Colony Symposium

New Rural Histories of New Zealand

Prof. Tom Brooking and Dr. Jane McCabe will present at the next CRoCC research seminar on Friday 26 May on aspects of New Zealand’s rural history.

In early June, Tom and Jane will present at the annual meeting of the Agricultural History Society on the theme “Who is a farmer? Regional identity and rural culture”.

They will present their papers at Friday’s seminar in preparation for the Agricultural History Society Conference. They are very keen to get feedback on their presentations.

Their talks will take place in the Hocken Seminar Room on Friday May 26th starting at 3.30. Coffee, tea and snacks will be provided, and all are invited to come for social drinks at Emerson’s afterwards.

All are welcome!

Film in the Colony Draft Programme Available

A Draft Programme for the forthcoming Film in the Colony Symposium is now available. Registration details as well as a registration portal will be provided soon.

Film in the Colony Symposium

Jessie Weston: Imperial Enthusiast?

Visiting scholar, Professor Sarah Carter (University of Alberta), is giving a research talk to the Department of History at Art History at the University of Otago on Wednesday May 10th in Burns 5, starting at 3.30. Sarah’s talk is: “From Auckland to the Motherland: Journalist and Imperial Enthusiast Jessie Weston/C. de Thierry”. All are welcome.



Women, Agriculture and the Contest for Land

On Sunday May 7th, Professor Sarah Carter (University of Alberta) is giving a free public talk on Women, Agriculture and the Contest for Land on the Canadian Prairies at Toitū starting at 2pm. All are welcome!

Seminar Series

This semester the Centre is hosting two research seminars. Prof. Sarah Carter (University of Alberta) and Associate Prof. Angela Wanhalla (University of Otago) will give the inaugural seminar for this year’s series on Friday 28th April. They will speak about their collaborative project relating to the life of Wiremu Colenso. The talk will take place at the Hocken Seminar Room and starts at 3.30. All are welcome!

Te Tumu Seminar by Prof. Sarah Carter

Visiting scholar and William Evans Fellow, Professor Sarah Carter (University of Alberta) is giving a research seminar on 1960s agricultural policy on First Nations reserves on Wednesday 26th April starting at 2.30. Professor Carter’s talk is hosted by Te Tumu: School of Māori, Pacific and Indigenous Studies at the University of Otago and will take place in Te Tumu’s ground floor performance space. All are welcome!



Prize Nomination for Visiting Scholar

The Centre for Research on Colonial Culture is pleased to learn that Professor Sarah Carter’s (University of Alberta) most recent book, Imperial Plots: Women, Land, and the Spadework of British Colonialism on the Canadian Prairies (University of Manitoba Press, 2016), has been shortlisted for the Sir John A. MacDonald Prize, which is awarded annually by the Canadian Historical Association to the “non-fiction work of Canadian history judged to have made the most significant contribution to an understanding of the Canadian past.” Also on the list is another good friend of the Centre, Adele Perry (University of Manitoba), who is nominated for Colonial Relations: The Douglas-Connolly Family and the Nineteenth-Century Imperial World (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015). Congratulations to Sarah and Adele!

Those interested in the entwined histories of gender, race and colonialism will be able to hear Professor Carter speak on these topics when she visits the University of Otago from 24 April to 14 May as a William Evans Fellow. While in Dunedin she will give a number of research talks, as well as a public lecture at Toitū Otago Settlers Museum on Sunday, May 7th. We’ll post details of these presentations very soon.


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