How Family History can Reveal Poor Peoples Lives in the Past

 Family historians working on their poor white ancestors often style themselves as new social historians, the vanguard of the “history from below” movement, determined to recover the histories of society’s marginalised. In their path-breaking study ‘Australians and the Past’, Paul Ashton and Paula Hamilton argue that most Australians’ knowledge of the past does not come […]

Book Review: Kin, a New Zealand Family

In her book about a New Zealand family, the McCulloughs, Melanie Nolan challenges us to think about the relationship between broad social structures (her main interest is social class and gender), individual agency, and the nexus of family. She explains in Kin: A Collective Biography (published in 2005 by Canterbury Press): “We choose our friends, our social networks […]

Racism, Inheritance and Family Financial Aid

“I didn’t own slaves, why should I feel guilty?” is a common response of White people to hearing about racism today. This response regards slavery and theft of Indigenous peoples’ land as so ancient that paying attention to them today only invites anger and guilt. But I will show how racial privilege is a living […]

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