A few years back I discovered something about myself in in an academic magazine. They’d reviewed my major book on the New Zealand Wars and, according to the reviewer, I’d apparently written this book to intentionally displace a particular Oxford professor in the public eye. It was the first I knew of this supposed motive. … More All about the history of Hawke’s Bay, and some other things
This week New Zealand marks Anzac Day which, with Australia, is our day of memorial to the dead of all our wars. It is a solemn moment when both nations pause to remember those who died, remember the sacrifices made in the wars of the twentieth century, particularly, in order that we can have the … More Remembering Gallipoli and the Anzacs
It’s eight years this week since I started blogging. It’s been a blast. I’ve been blown away by the scale of readership, which I never expected when I started. That’s been helped by the fact that my blog was ‘Freshly Pressed’ by WordPress.com in 2013, and was then hit by a ‘Redditlanche’ in 2015, which … More Eight years of blogging – let’s party!
It’s the eighty-seventh anniversary today of New Zealand’s most lethal historical disaster; the Hawke’s Bay earthquake. Around 10.47 am on the sunny morning of 3 February, a magnitude 7.8 quake struck the district and threw the towns of Napier and Hastings into ruin. Damage extended from Gisborne in the north to Whanganui in the south-west, … More Remembering the Hawke’s Bay quake of ’31 – and the ‘big ones’ of 1460
Being summer and all that in the southern hemisphere I figured I should finish up the year with a small homage to summer clothes, Kiwi bloke style. Disclaimer: I have none of these in my own wardrobe. 1. Walk shorts. Style: Short trousers for men, same style as a business suit but stopping mid-thigh. Accompanied … More Summer sartorialism, Kiwi style
Back when I was at primary school one of the many risks kids faced was being seen near other kids who drew the attention of a teacher and were punished. The thing was that anybody in the area was – by definition – part of the group and would be scooped up and also punished. … More Why ‘online profiling’ is so dangerous
One of the things that always intrigues me about history – as a field of endeavour – is the way so much effort is put into thinking about how we understand the past, and in particular, how to assess the nature of the data. Although enthusiasts often take the attitude that ‘the facts’ as shown … More Cool ways of understanding the past