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NZ Wars: Stories of Waitara

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Produced by Great Southern Television for RNZ, Stories of Waitara was released on the Rā Maumahara marked on the 28th October this year at Ōwae Marae in Taranaki.

Created and presented by Mihingarangi Forbes, it follows on from the award-winning Stories of Ruapekapekaand tells the stories of the first Taranaki War of 1860-61, drawing on Te Ātiawa tribal historians and experts and with input from me.






It also features a series of extended interviews and other clips. Here is the full sit-down interview with me.



And some further scenes visiting various monuments and memorials connected with the wars and reflecting on what they tell us about how this history has been remembered within Taranaki.

Teaching New Zealand History

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The Education Gazette asked me to comment on the recent announcement that New Zealand history will soon be taught in all schools.

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The announcement that New Zealand’s histories will be taught in all schools by 2022 is a crucial step in ensuring future generations leave school with at least some level of understanding of our nation’s past – including “the good, the bad, and the ugly”, as Rahui Papa of Waikato-Tainui said at the time.

But it also opens up important discussions around what exactly should be taught and how.

For me, a vital first principle is that iwi and hapū are at the forefront of those conversations.

Connecting with mana whenua history will empower rangatahi to better understand the places they call home.



Begin close to home

Students should be encouraged to engage with the histories of their own communities, but without forgetting the wider context.

Rangatahi in the Gisborne district, for example, should learn about the 1865 siege of Waere…

The New Zealand Wars: Vincent O'Malley in discussion with Mihingarangi Forbes

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The New Zealand Wars were a series of conflicts fought between the Crown and various Maori groups between 1845 and 1872. Profoundly shaping the course and direction of our nation's history, the wars have been neglected, misrepresented and have had little hold on the popular imagination.
 Today, however, interest in the wars is reviving, in part due to books like The New Zealand Wars | Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa published earlier this year by Bridget Williams Books. Mihingarangi Forbes interviews the historian Vincent O'Malley about the stories of wartime in front of an audience at Te Papa.To listen to the full conversation, click here.

Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa: Te Papa Event

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Join journalist Mihingarangi Forbes, and historian and author Vincent O'Malley, as they explore the ongoing impact of the New Zealand Wars.

When:Sun 6 Oct 2019, 3.00pm–5.00pmWhere: Rongomaraeroa (Te Marae), Level 4, Te PapaCost: Free The New Zealand Wars were a series of conflicts fought between the Crown and various Māori groups between 1845 and 1872.



These wars profoundly shaped the course and direction of our nation’s history. The wars are an integral part of the New Zealand story but we have not always cared to remember or acknowledge them. Today, however, interest in the wars is resurgent.

Join award-winning journalist Mihingarangi Forbes and acclaimed historian Vincent O'Malley (author of best-selling histories The New Zealand Wars | Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa (link is external) and The Great War for New Zealand (link is external)) as they explore the ongoing impact of these defining conflicts.

This event takes place in advance of the Rā Maumahar…

WORD Christchurch Events

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Owning History
How can we see where we’re going, if we don’t know where we’ve been? In his recent Michael King Memorial Lecture, historian Vincent O’Malley stressed the importance of teaching the bloody story of the New Zealand Wars in our schools, to understand today’s society, and recently gave historical context to the Ihumātao dispute in The Spinoff.

Simon Winchester has spent his career bringing to life stories from the past, and Sacha McMeeking’s research interests lie in Māori futures, which are inextricably linked to history. Join them for a lively conversation about the importance of owning our history, the good and the bad, in order to look to the future. Chaired by Peter Field.

Saturday 31 August, 1.00–2.00 p.m.
The Piano
Christchurch


Tickets $20, available from WORD Christchurch.





Vincent O'Malley: The New Zealand Wars


The New Zealand Wars profoundly shaped the course and direction of our nation’s history. Fought between the Crown and various groups of Māori …

Why we need to open up about past Māori and Pākehā conflict

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From the New Zealand Listener, 25 May 2019

by Sally Blundell


Calls are growing for us to take a more honest look at our past, particularly the wars over land and power that shaped the country. 

It began with a single musket shot, fired perhaps by accident, in Wairau, near Nelson, in 1843. It ended with desultory gunfire in a steep and sodden gorge south of Waikaremoana in 1873. Bookended by these two inglorious events, the New Zealand Wars claimed the lives of an estimated 2250 Māori and 560 British and colonial troops. Records are far from complete, but, including the wounded, the number of casualties could be more than 6000. The result was the transfer of nearly 1.5 million hectares of land into European hands, most commonly through the 1863 New Zealand Settlements Act. They changed the social, economic and political landscape forever.



Still, says Wellington historian Vincent O’Malley, we barely talk about it. Commemorations are few, many of the war sites are degraded and u…

Talking New Zealand Wars History at the Marlborough Book Festival

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I will be discussing New Zealand Wars history at two sessions of the Marlborough Book Festival early next month, the first featuring a cruise of the Marlborough Sounds, departing from Picton, and the second at the main festival venue in Blenheim the following day.

For both sessions I will be in conversation with local historian Ron Crosby, and discussing my most recent work, The New Zealand Wars/Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa as well as The Great War for New Zealand



Session details:

Our Heritage - in conversation with Ron Crosby

8.45am-12pm, Friday 5 July, MV Odyssea Cruise (departing Marlborough Tour Company - Town Wharf #5, Picton Marina 9am), $125 
Come and cruise the beautiful Marlborough Sounds aboard Marlborough Tour Company's MV Odyssea. Enjoy brunch and gain insight into some of the lesser-known aspects of Aotearoa history, including the Wairau Afray, with Dr Vincent O’Malley in conversation with Marlborough-based historian Ron Crosby.


The New Zealand Wars- in conversation wit…

New Zealand Wars, Land Wars, or Māori Wars?

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The following extract from The New Zealand Wars/Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoafirst appeared in E-Tangata


What historians and others have called the wars has changed over time. Why is this of interest? Do names really matter?

Well, they do because they convey key messages about the nature of the wars, their causes and participants. For a long time, it was common to refer to this series of conflicts as “the Māori Wars”.
That was consistent with the British tendency to name wars after their enemies; for instance, the Boer War, the Zulu War, or the Indian Mutiny. But there are some obvious problems with such a label. For a start, it tends to sheet home responsibility for the wars to Māori, rendering the other combatants invisible.

In the 1960s, some historians tried to correct this by adopting the label “the Anglo–Māori Wars”. But this is also a problem, in that some Māori fought on the “Anglo” (that is, British or Crown) side. And given estimates that up to 40 per cent of the imperi…

The New Zealand Wars/Ngā Pakanga o Aotearoa

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From the BWB webpage for my forthcoming new history of the New Zealand Wars:

The New Zealand Wars were a series of conflicts that profoundly shaped the course and direction of our nation’s history.

Fought between the Crown and various groups of Māori between 1845 and 1872, the wars touched many aspects of life in nineteenth century New Zealand, even in those regions spared actual fighting. Physical remnants or reminders from these conflicts and their aftermath can be found all over the country, whether in central Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin, or in more rural locations such as Te Pōrere or Te Awamutu.



The wars are an integral part of the New Zealand story but we have not always cared to remember or acknowledge them. Today, however, interest in the wars is resurgent. Public figures are calling for the wars to be taught in all schools and a national day of commemoration was recently established.

Following on from the best-selling The Great War for New Zealand, Vincent O&#…

Michael King Memorial Lecture: Auckland Writers Festival

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Although the New Zealand Wars (1845-1872) have profoundly shaped our country they have been little acknowledged, taught and understood. Historian Vincent O’Malley presents an introduction to the causes, course and consequences of these defining conflicts fought between groups of Māori and the Crown in his book The New Zealand Wars: Ngā Pakanga O Aotearoa. He delivers the 2019 Michael King Lecture.

Historian and founding partner of research consultancy HistoryWorks, Dr Vincent O’Malley is the author of The New Zealand HeraldBook of the Year 2016 and Ockham NZ Book Awards 2017 longlisted book The Great War for New Zealand, and new title The New ZealandWars.

Talking New Zealand History

Late last year Vaughan Rapatahana conducted an interview with me for Scoop Review of Books.


Kia ora Vincent.
Tēnā koe mō tāu pukapuka. Ka nui te pai tēnei mahi.

VR: Let’s start at the top.The Great War for New Zealand: Waikato 1800 -2000 is a massive book and a mighty indictment of the ways in which Pākehā grabbed the land off and of Māori; a systematic snatching that of course has had and continues to have serious ramifications for many Māori today. What are the positive flow-on effects stemming from this important book, that you are experiencing yourself?
Vincent: The response to the book has been phenomenal right from the day we launched it back in October 2016. That was at the Waahi Pā poukai in Huntly. I handed over the first official copy to Kīngi Tuheitia and wandered around the back of the whare where a big crowd was gathering. I wondered what was happening. It turned out they were already queuing to get their own copies of the book and so I spent the next three or four hour…

Raupatu and Remembrance: The New Zealand Settlements Act

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