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New Book Sheds Light On Maori Culture History

12 October 2000

New Book Sheds Light On Fundamental Archaeological Assumptions About Maori Culture History

As the Waihou river wends its way across the Hauraki Plains to the Firth of Thames it passes through an immensely rich archaeological landscape. This land was the birthplace of many of our models of Maori culture history. These ideas now date back 40 years and have scarcely been questioned since.

A new book, "Waihou Journeys: The Archaeology of 400 Years of Maori Settlement", is an unprecedented investigation of the Hauraki Plains that sheds light on the fundamental assumptions of New Zealand archaeology.

Using a "landscape approach" it draws together Maori oral history, European written accounts, environmental reconstruction and archaeological excavation and analysis to build up a rich and complete picture of Maori social and cultural change over 400 years.

While the focus of the study is a particular geographical location, its comprehensive treatment makes it a radical and refreshing approach.

This is an entirely new approach to our history, of exciting interest for both general readers and experts in several fields.

"Waihou Journeys", says respected historian and author Angela Ballara, "combines careful research, both historical and archaeological, with breadth of vision, a multi-disciplinary approach that I hope will be the way of the future".

"Waihou Journeys" is presented in A4 format, to highlight the intricate detail in its 65 maps and figures, and nineteenth-century paintings and drawings.

"Waihou Journeys" will be officially launched and presented to representatives of Hauraki iwi at 6 pm tonight at Waipapa Marae, The University of Auckland.

About the Author Dr Caroline Phillips is a consultant archaeologist with 33 years of field experience. As a teenager in England she caught the archaeology bug by volunteering on a dig looking for Arthurian remains at South Cadbury, the supposed site of Arthur's Camelot. Her one regret on emigrating to New Zealand in 1969 was that "there might not be any archaeology". Luckily she found she was wrong. She also found her profession of textile designing was not in great demand, so she turned to archaeological illustration.

Caroline was for many years the cartographer in the Anthropology Department at the University of Auckland. During this time she pursued her love of archaeology on digs and undertook surveys for the Historical Places Trust. She backed up this practical work with academic qualifications, gaining her MA in 1987 with a thesis on the Karikari Peninsula, and her PhD in 1994 with work on the Waihou River, on which this book is based.

She has lectured at the University of Auckland and directed many of the Archaeology Fieldschools. She has given papers at international conferences in India and Australia as well as at local institutions and conferences.

Nowadays, Caroline divides her time between teaching at Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi, doing research into Taranaki wetland sites, and undertaking resource management work as an archaeological consultant. She lives in the bush in the Waitakere Ranges.

"Waihou Journeys: The Archaeology of 400 Years of Maori Settlement" Caroline Phillips 12 October 2000 A4, paperback, maps, figures, illustrations ISBN 1 86940 227 8 $39.95

- ENDS -

Christine O'Brien Marketing Manager Auckland University Press

Tel: (64-9) 373-7999 x 5735 Fax: (64-9) 373-7465

New titles from AUP:

"Voice and Vision: A History of New Zealand Broadcasting Volume 2" Patrick Day (Broadcasting has played a significant role in forming our ideas of identity and nation. Pat Day concludes his history of NZ broadcasting with full coverage of developments from 1950 to the present day. 1 86940 233 2; $59.95. Two-volume set: 1 86940 241 3; $99)

**Reprinting** "His Way: A Biography of Robert Muldoon" Barry Gustafson ("There is no doubt about who is our number one political biographer" - Michael King. 1 86940 236 7; $59.95)

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