Tangata o le Moana: New Zealand and the People of the Pacific

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Edited by: Sean Mallon, Kolokesa Māhina-Tuai, and Damon Salesa
Publication date: May 2012

Aotearoa New Zealand is home to a large Pasifika population. This illustrated history is the first of its kind to tell their stories – from the legendary feats of the ancestors of modern Māori, to the politically explosive dawn raids of the 1970s, and beyond.

This beautiful book is lavishly illustrated with hundreds of historical and contemporary photos and archival documents. Drawing on a rich cache of oral history, it is a fresh and surprising record of over a thousand years of discovery, encounter, and cultural exchange.

View sample pages here


Table of Contents:


  1. E kore au e ngaro: Ancestral connections to the Pacific
  2. Explorers and pioneers: The first Pacific people in New Zealand
  3. Visitors: Tupaia the navigator priest
  4. Little-known lives: Pacific Islanders in nineteenth-century New Zealand
  5. A Pacific destiny: New Zealand’s overseas empire 1840–1945
  6. Barques, banana boats and Boeings: Connecting New Zealand and the Pacific
  7. FIA (forgotten in action): Pacific Islanders in the New Zealand armed forces
  8. A land of milk and honey? Education and employment migration schemes in the postwar era
  9. Communities and cultures: Pacific organisations in New Zealand
  10. Economic links between the Pacific and New Zealand in the twentieth century
  11. All power to the people: Overstayers, dawn raids and the Polynesian Panthers
  12. Good neighbour, big brother, kin? New Zealand’s foreign policy in the contemporary Pacific
  13. Representing the nation: Pacific peoples and politicians in New Zealand
  14. Conspicuous selections: Pacific Islanders in New Zealand sport
  15. Arts specific: Pacific peoples and New Zealand arts




Anne Salmond
Cluny MacPherson
Fulimalo Pereira
Gavin McLean
Geoff Bertram
Graeme Whimp
Janet Davidson
Melani Anae
Peter Adds
Teresia Teaiwa
Claudia Orange



Extent: 360 pp
Illustrations: More than 300 full-colour plates and black-and-white images
Format: 280 mm x 230 mm
Binding: PB