Stout Research Centre


Public Lectures

"Listen to the German Band, the Music's Grand": Local Perceptions of Itinerant German Musicians in New Zealand, 1850-1920

Date: 13 August 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: 12 Waiteata Road, Kelburn

Presenter: Samantha Owens 
Associate Professor at the School of Music, The University of Queensland

Although largely forgotten today, bands of German musicians were regular visitors to New Zealand’s shores from the 1850s up until the outbreak of World War I, making them among the earliest professional European musical ensembles to be heard in the country. Plying their trade on the streets and in other public spaces, German bands were also routinely hired to perform for garden parties, school sports days, dances, and boat trips, as well as on countless other occasions. Yet despite their apparent popularity, contemporary comment demonstrates that reactions to their performances were decidedly mixed. While some members of the public clearly enjoyed the contribution German bands made to local musical life, others were less than delighted by their (often noisy) presence. In 1893, for example, one Wellington resident complained that “a German Band. .  .  may be heard braying at every street corner at all hours of the day and night,” while noting also that “It is the genuine article, all the performers being wanderers from the ‘Vaterland,’ unmistakeable ‘sauerkrauts.’” Within weeks of the outbreak of World War I, ten members of a German band had been arrested in Auckland and taken to Somes Island, where they were interned for the duration of the conflict. This seminar examines the New Zealand public’s changing perceptions of German bands from colonial times until shortly after the end of the First World War. 


The Good News about the Māori Economy

Date: 3 September 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: Stout Research Centre, 12 Waiteata Rd, Kelburn

Presenter: Dr Philip Best  
Victoria Business School - Māori Content Project

The Māori economy is achieving a broad base of economic strength. Whilst the Māori economy is growing at three times the rate of the overall economy the media seems to be able to dwell on what is going badly rather than provide the details for what is going well. This is a good news talk redressing the balance by providing a view of the phenomenal growth the Māori economy is achieving. Using industry examples to show how it is poised for even greater growth.



White-Collar and Blue-Collar Financial Crime in New Zealand

Date: 17 September 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: Stout Research Centre, 12 Waiteata Rd, Kelburn

Presenter: Lisa Marriott 
Victoria University School of Accounting and Commercial Law

Individuals in New Zealand can expect to receive different treatments in the justice system depending on whether their crime is ‘white-collar’ or ‘blue-collar’. This presentation will report on the extent of these differences, using tax evasion as a proxy for white-collar crime and welfare fraud as a proxy for blue-collar crime. These offences are conceptually similar: they are both non-violent and financial in nature; they have the same victim (government and society); both reduce government resources; and both are deliberate. However, an important distinction is that tax evasion is typically undertaken by individuals in privileged positions, while benefit fraud is typically undertaken by those less advantaged in society. Moreover, tax evasion has considerably greater economic significance in New Zealand than welfare fraud. The presentation will also report on the extent to which tax debtors and welfare debtors can expect to receive similar treatments in relation to their debt repayment, when legitimately incurred debts to the government exist.

Lisa Marriott is an Associate Professor of Taxation at Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Accounting and Commercial Law. Lisa’s research interests include social justice and inequality, and the behavioural impacts of taxation. Lisa has publications in a range of refereed journals and is the author of The Politics of Retirement Savings Taxation: A Trans-Tasman Perspective. Lisa was recently awarded a Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Grant to investigate the different treatments of tax evasion and welfare fraud in the New Zealand justice system.


The Waikato War: Myth, History and the ‘Art of Forgetting’

Date: 24 September 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: McLaurin Lecture Theatre 103, Kelburn Campus, Victoria University of Wellington

Vincent O'Malley 
JD Stout Fellow 2014 

Collective memories, like individual ones, can be selective. We sometimes choose what we remember. And those choices are often instructive. But as scholars have also noted, there is an art to forgetting. It can be more than simply the absence of memory. This talk surveys how the Waikato War has been remembered, or forgotten, historically and asks what this reveals about New Zealand’s foundational myths and narratives.


The Changing Face of James Hector

Date: 1 October 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: 12 Waiteata Road, Kelburn

Presenter: Simon Nathan

James Hector was the dominating figure in the scientific life of 19th century New Zealand. As well as setting up and running the Geological Survey (now GNS Science), Colonial Museum (now Te Papa), and New Zealand Institute (now Royal Society of New Zealand), Hector became a trusted government advisor on technical matters. 2015 will be the 150th anniversary of Hector’s arrival in Wellington and the start of the Geological Survey and Colonial Museum.

As a public figure, Hector was often photographed. This talk will follow Hector’s life through photographs, comparing impressions gained from the images with the written record.

Simon Nathan is a geologist and science historian, who was previously Science Editor for Te Ara, the online encyclopedia of New Zealand. Over the last six months he has been working at the Stout Centre on a biography of James Hector.

A 'volatile debate': The delivery of and reaction to the 'fiscal envelope' policies

Date: 15 October 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: 12 Waiteata Road, Kelburn

Presenter: Therese Crocker

The release of the Crown Proposals for the Settlement of Treaty of Waitangi Claims, in December 1994, and the subsequent consultation process provoked a ‘volatile debate’ throughout the country. Almost 20 years after the release of what became known as the 'fiscal envelope' policies, it is timely to reflect on the details of the proposed policies, the reaction to them and the outcome of the consultation process.

Therese Crocker is a PhD student at the Stout Centre at Victoria University of Wellington. Her doctoral research focuses on the development of Crown policy on the Treaty of Waitangi claims settlement process, from 1988 to 1998.


How Memory Shapes Pakeha Consciousness

Date: 22 October 2014

Time: 4.10 pm

Venue: 12 Waiteata Road, Kelburn

Presenter: Cherie Lacey

“To remember something is at the same time to remember oneself”

— Paul Ricoeur

It is long been asserted that Pākehā do not possess a strong sense of memory. We have been called a ‘historyless’ people, who suffer from a collective amnesia, or disavowal, about the past—particularly when it comes to our colonial past. Further, and perhaps unsurprisingly, although the field of memory studies remains a significant area of scholarship internationally, there has been little, if any, sustained study of memory in relation to Pākehā culture. The traditional assertion is this: written history is dominated by Pākehā; oral memory is the domain of Māori.

In this paper, I will address this so-called deficit of Pākehā memory, and suggest that we do, in fact, have a strongly memorial culture. However, rather than focusing on what we remember (the objects of memory), I will instead look at how we remember (the operations of memory). In particular, I will focus on the operation of memory known as recollection (anāmnēsis): the conscious act of searching out the past, whose successful end-point is a moment of self-recognition. Following Paul Ricoeur, I will suggest that consciousness about how we remember is a crucial step between a culture that passively repeats the past and a culture capable of self-reflection. This seminar is an exploration of the routes Pākehā take when we set off in search of a memory, and what it is we recognise when we recognise ourselves at the end this search.

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