School of Social and Cultural Studies
[photograph: Jack Ross]

Social and Cultural Studies:
Monograph Series


  • Welcome

  • Notes on Formatting

  • List of Contributors

  • List of Titles:

    1. Peter Mataira, Pa'u Tafaogalupe Mulitalo-Lauta, Rajen Prasad, Paul Spoonley, Marilyn Waring, & Wong Liu Shueng, Cross-Cultural Research: A Symposium. Introduction by Jennifer Lawn & Eleanor Rimoldi (November 2001). viii + 44 pp. [$10.00]

    2. Grant Duncan, Pain and the Body Politic. Discussion by Victoria Grace. Introduction by Eleanor Rimoldi & Jennifer Lawn (June 2002). viii + 60 pp. [$10.00]

    3. Lily George, Different Music, Same Dance: Te Taou and the Treaty Claims Process. Introduction by Graeme MacRae (June 2004) {reprinted December 2004, with revised genealogies}). vi + 110 pp. [$10.00]

    4. Carmel Cervin & Lewis Williams, Participatory Action Research in Aotearoa/NZ (July 2004). iv + 66 pp. [$10.00]

    5. Mike O'Brien, Jennifer Lawn, Fiona Te Momo, & Neil Lunt, A Third Term?: Evaluating the Policy Legacy of the Labour-led Government, 1999-2005 (August 2005). vi + 60 pp. [$10.00)

    6. Grant Young, Michael Belgrave, & Tom Bennion, Native and Māori Land Legislation in the Superior Courts, 1840-1980 (November 2005). iv + 98 pp. [$10.00)

    7. Julee Browning, Blood Ties with Strangers: Navigating the Course of Adoption Reunion over the Long Term (November 2006) {June 2007}. vi + 62 pp. [$10.00)

    8. Jack Ross, To Terezín: A Travelogue. Afterword by Martin Edmond (June 2007). ii + 90 pp. [$10.00)

    9. Rowan McCormick, Writers of Passage. Preface by Mary Paul. Afterword by Eleanor Rimoldi (June 2008). ii + 70 pp. [$10.00]

  • Forthcoming Titles


Forthcoming Titles:

[Gottfried Lindauer]


Professor Michael Belgrave
Anna Deason
Dr Grant Young

[Matt Stenning: Auckland Skyline (2009)]

Views of Auckland

Essays to Celebrate the 10th Anniversary
of the School of Social and Cultural Studies
at Massey Albany

Ed. Grant Duncan & Jack Ross


Title 9:

[Cover design: Rowan McCormick / Cover layout: Jack Ross ]

Writers of Passage

by Rowan McCormick

Edited by Jack Ross

Preface by Mary Paul

Afterword by Eleanor Rimoldi

Social and Cultural Studies 9
(June 2008)
ISSN: 1175-7132


I considered the potential of ascribing ‘heroic’ significance to the events of our lives – to cast a more favourable reading on those hard times past, and yet to come.

Rowan McCormick’s monograph is based on an experimental and explorative research process - a leap of faith - from which has resulted a somewhat experimental and explorative essay. With reference to both anthropological and literary theory, a series of conversations with writers reveals the heroic nature of their existence.

This study celebrates the power of narrative to mediate a sense of the conditions of one's existence, to manipulate an audience, to affect conventions, to impress readers with notions about the other, to impress a sense of order upon a chaotic existence, to convey knowledge, and to affect a sense of connection between people.

Recognising what he calls ‘the generative and transformative power of the ethnographic process,’ Rowan's monograph examines the many ways in which we attempt to ‘write’ ourselves into significance. The result is a fresh and witty essay which combines insights from both English and Anthropology, and suggests fruitful new ways of reconciling the two disciplines.

Notes on Contributors:

Rowan McCormick is a graduate student in Massey's School of Social and Cultural Studies, majoring in Anthropology and Media Studies.

Dr Mary Paul is the Coordinator of the English Programme in the School of Social and Cultural Studies.

Dr Eleanor Rimoldi is the Coordinator of the Social Anthropology Programme in the School of Social and Cultural Studies.


Title 8:

[Cover photograph: Jack Ross / Cover layout: June Lincoln]

To Terezín:
A Travelogue

by Jack Ross

Afterword by Martin Edmond

Social and Cultural Studies 8
(June 2007)
ISSN: 1175-7132

from the Preface:

“Your irritation at the disunity is, justifiably or not, the effect I intend.”

So W. H. Auden to one of the first critics of The Sea and the Mirror (1944), his wartime verse commentary on Shakespeare’s The Tempest. More specifically, to criticism of the discordant moment in the poem when Caliban addresses the audience in the urbane, prosy accents of Henry James.

The most natural style for talking about the horrors of Nazi oppression during the Second World War has come to be the clipped, gnomic phrases of Paul Celan or Nellie Sachs – both camp survivors who managed thus to refute Adorno’s famous dictum that “writing lyric poetry after Auschwitz is barbaric.”

Whatever the possibilities for Celan and Sachs, it seems (to say the least) rather presumptuous to attempt to walk in their footsteps so many decades later.

My problem was to write “naturally” and approachably about one of the most unnatural acts of modern times – without a distinct personal axe to grind and with full awareness of my temerity in doing so. If the result seems smooth, seamless and entirely self-justifying then I will have failed. My interest is more in the questions I raise than in the answers I’ve attempted to provide. ...

– Jack Ross

Notes on Contributors:

Martin Edmond’s most recent book is Luca Antara: Passages in Search of Australia (East Street, 2006), described by J. M. Coetzee as “a book-lover’s book, a graceful and mesmerizing blend of history, autobiography, travel and romance.” His other publications include The Autobiography of My Father (AUP, 1992), The Resurrection of Philip Clairmont (AUP, 1999), Fenua Imi: The Pacific in History and Imaginary (Bumper Books, 2002), Chronicle of the Unsung (AUP, 2004) and Ghost Who Writes (Four Winds Press, 2004).

Dr Jack Ross is a lecturer in English and Creative writing at the School of Social and Cultural Studies, Massey Albany. He is the author of various books of poems, including City of Strange Brunettes (Pohutukawa Press, 1998) and Chantal’s Book (HeadworX, 2002), as well as four works of fiction: Nights with Giordano Bruno (Bumper Books, 2000), Monkey Miss Her Now (Danger Publishing, 2004), Trouble in Mind (Titus, 2005), and The Imaginary Museum of Atlantis (Titus, 2006). He also edited, with Jan Kemp, the spoken-word anthologies Classic NZ Poets & Contemporary NZ Poets in Performance (AUP, 2006 & 2007).


Title 7:

[Cover photograph: Luke King / Cover image: fern sculpture by Virginia King]

Blood Ties with Strangers:
Navigating the Course of Adoption Reunion over the Long Term

by Julee Browning

Edited by Jennifer Lawn

Social and Cultural Studies 7
(November 2006)
ISSN: 1175-7132


This is a revised version of a Masters Thesis in Social Anthropology (2005) which reports original research conducted with twenty adoptees, adopted under closed-stranger protocols, who have maintained regular post-reunion contact with their birth families for more than ten years. It examines the themes of the mothering role, family obligation and family membership to uncover how adoptees navigate their family membership within and between two families (adoptive and birth family). This study presents the thoughts, feelings and observations of the participants in their own words to convey a deeper understanding of their experiences. Drawing upon in-depth interviews, this study has sought to expand on car Her research focussing on the search and reunion and immediate post­reunion stages to examine the long-term experiences of adoptees in post­reunion.

The principal finding is that reunited relationships have no predictable pathways and are approached with varying levels of ambivalence and emotional strain, and that there is no fixed pattern of family arrangements and relational boundaries. While closed-stranger adoption will eventually cease, this research may assist in understanding the issues surrounding the reunion between anonymous gamete donors and their offspring in the future.

About the Author:

Julee Browning completed her Masters in Social Anthropology in February 2005 and then became involved in several research projects including Labour Market Dynamics, Transnational family Obligations and Growing up with a parent suffering Schizophrenia. Julee is now a Strategic Analyst for the Counties Manukau District of the New Zealand Police where her research projects are wide and varied and span from best business practice to specific crime type problems. Julee can be contacted at juleeab@ihug.co.nz.


Title 6:

[Cover photograph: Luke King / Cover image: fern sculpture by Virginia King]

Native and Māori Land Legislation
in the Superior Courts, 1840-1980

by Grant Young, Tom Bennion and Michael Belgrave

Edited by Graeme MacRae and Jennifer Lawn

Social and Cultural Studies 6
(November 2005)
ISSN: 1175-7132


While Maori appeals to the Treaty of Waitangi since 1840 have been increasingly appreciated in recent decades, the extent of Maori participation in the legal system in the past has received only limited attention. Not only were Maori grievances articulated in both judicial and political environments, through legal proceedings in the superior courts and petitions to parliament, Maori landowners took action to protect their property rights and maintain their customary interests. This monograph is based on a study of 610 reported decisions of the superior courts which dealt with Maori land and the legislative framework which administered Maori land from 1840 to 1980. This surprisingly high number of cases demonstrate, particularly from the 1870s, Maori engagement with constitutional processes. Maori acted to pursue their interests to the greatest extent possible within the institutions of the emerging colonial state despite the political, legal and financial constraints it imposed.

Keywords: Native Land Court, Maori Land Court, customary law, native title, legislation, colonisation.

Notes on Contributors:

Prof Michael Belgrave teaches History and Social Policy in the School of Social and Cultural Studies, Massey Albany.

Tom Bennion is a Wellington-based Barrister and Solicitor, specialising in the fields of Māori land law and Treaty of Waitangi claims.

Dr Grant Young is a researcher into Māori land titles, specialising in Treaty of Waitangi claims. He is based in the School of Social and Cultural Studies, Massey Albany.


Title 5:

[Cover photograph: Luke King / Cover image: fern sculpture by Virginia King]

A Third Term?
Evaluating the Policy Legacy of the Labour-led Government, 1999-2005

by Mike O'Brien, Jennifer Lawn, Fiona Te Momo & Neil Lunt

Introduction by Eleanor Rimoldi

Social and Cultural Studies 5
(August 2005)
ISSN: 1175-7132

from the Introduction:

As I was born a citizen of a free State, and a member of the Sovereign, I feel that however feeble the influence my voice can have on public affairs, the right of voting on them makes it my duty to study them ...

- Jean Jacques Rousseau, 1762
The Social Contract, Book 1

This collection of essays by four academics in the School of Social and Cultural Studies goes beyond the usual brief of the School's monograph series in that it is not only directed at "scholars and students in the hu­manities and social sciences" but to the wider public in the tradition of the academic responsibility to act as critic and conscience of society. Put together on the eve of the 2005 New Zealand national election, they constitute both a record of recent history in four significant policy areas and a critical analysis of the effect of these policies on New Zealand society. The overall theme of the essays might be seen as one of social justice and each essay focuses on policy areas that affect those who could be seen as representative in one way or another of minorities in our society – the poor, creative artists, Māori, and people with disabilities.

Mike O'Brien's essay is an evaluation of social policies that can have the effect of excluding groups of people from full participation in society on the basis of economic disadvantage.

Jennifer Lawn's essay reviews Labour Party policy on the creative arts, which has seen an increase in financial support in many areas. How­ever, the accompanying closer integration with the economic interests of the state is viewed with some unease.

Fiono Te Momo sees the various political parties as divided between two "camps" - those who see the Treaty of Waitangi as divisive, and those who see the Treaty as uniting the nation. She analyses policy statements on the website of each of the political parties in order to assess whether these policies seek the development or the annihilation of Māori culture.

In the final essay Neil Lunt takes up the issues of government policy that affects disabled people and their opportunity to take part in New Zealand society as full citizens. ...

- Eleanor Rimoldi

Notes on Contributors:

Dr Jennifer Lawn lectures in the School's English and Media Studies programmes. Her teaching and research interests include contemporary New Zealand cultural studies, women's writing (particularly Janet Frame and Margaret Atwood), and Gothic literature and film. She has co­authored further articles on recent New Zealand cultural policy, forth­coming in the film journal PostScript, the Rodopi volume Global Fissures: Postcolonial Fusions, and the Columbia University Press volume The Lord of the Rings Text in Context. Email: j.m.lawn@massey.ac.nz.

Dr Neil Lunt teaches social policy studies and research methods in the School. His research interests include welfare reform, the policy process, disability, and the role of evidence in policy and practice. Email: n.t.lunt@massey.ac.nz.

A/Prof Mike O'Brien is Head of the School of Social and Cultural Studies on Massey's Auckland campus. He teaches in the social work and social policy programmes at Massey where he has been a staff member since 1980. He has undertaken research and written extensively 011 a range of areas in social work and social policy. Recent work includes a review of the research on the effect of workfare on children and a third edition of the co-authored text Social Policy in Aotearoa/New Zealand. He is currently engaged in research on social exclusion and social work, the not-for-profit sector, and accommodating the needs of mental health service users. Email: m.a.obrien@massey.ac.nz.

Dr Fiona Te Momo lectures in the School's Māori Studies and Social Work programmes. Her discipline is Development Studies and she lec­tures in Community Development, Māori Development, and Social Ser­vices. Current research activities include exploring Māori perspectives on biotechnology and work-life balance. She affiliates to Ngati Raukawa, Ngati Porou, and Ngati Konohi tribes and has worked with political groups in the Tai Rawhiti Region. Email: f.temomo@massey.ac.nz.