Humanitarian Narratives: Knowledge and the Politics of Mission and Empire

in Social Sciences and Missions
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Abstract

This essay offers a reassessment of the connections between missionary work and empire building. It focuses on the role of 'humanitarian narratives' in soliciting sympathy amongst British evangelicals and humanitarians for the 'suffering' of Maori during the 1820s and 1830s. Exploring the nature and influence of these narratives not only allows the historian to explore the connections between the empire and British metropolitan culture and politics in this period, but it also provides new insights into why New Zealand was finally incorporated into the British empire in 1840.

Humanitarian Narratives: Knowledge and the Politics of Mission and Empire

in Social Sciences and Missions

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