Fragments from a Contested Past Remembrance, Denial and New Zealand History
‘What a nation or society chooses to remember and forget speaks to its contemporary priorities and sense of identity. Understanding how that process works enables us to better imagine a future with a different, or wider, set of priorities.’
History has rarely felt more topical or relevant as, all across the globe, nations have begun to debate who, how and what they choose to remember and forget. In this BWB Text addressing ‘difficult histories’, a team of five researchers, several from iwi invaded or attacked during the nineteenth-century New Zealand Wars, reflect on these questions of memory and loss locally.
Combining first-hand fieldnotes from their journeys to sites of conflict and contestation with innovative archival and oral research exploring the gaps and silences in the ways we engage with the past, this group investigates how these events are remembered – or not – and how this has shaped the modern New Zealand nation.