The Long Forgetting: Post-colonial literary culture in New Zealand

Long Forgetting, The Post-colonial literary cultue in New Zealand

Patrick Evans

(Out of print)

November 2007
276pp, Paperback
228 x 152 mm
ISBN 978-1-877257-69-8

The Long Forgetting is the first book-length study of New Zealand’s post-colonial literary culture.

Beginning with a survey of the wrenching economic, social, and cultural changes that have occurred since 1970 – including Maori protest, the anti-tour protests of 1981, Rogernomics, Ruthanasia, the ‘fiscal envelope’ and the America’s Cup win – it then moves back to the nineteenth century and the formation of Europeans’ relationship with Maori. 

Subsequent chapters survey recent critics’ work in breaking up the myth of male-dominated cultural nationalism that occupied much of the mid-twentieth century, and, returning to the years since 1970, show the rise of new writing by women, gays and Maori. 

A final chapter treats the ‘Generation X’ phenomenon, Maori writers’ struggle with official biculturalism, and the rise of a distinctive, New Zealand-based Pasifika writing.

Along the way, The Long Forgetting ranges from high culture to the popular – from po-faced nineteenth-century poetry and the Te Maoriexhibition to sheep-station romance, Whale Rider and bro’Town.

Patrick Evans has studied and taught New Zealand literature at the University of Canterbury since 1978. His critical books include Janet Frame (1977) and The Penguin History of New Zealand Literature (1990). He has also published two novels, prize-winning essays and short fiction, and has had plays performed in New Zealand and Australia.