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Lands for the People?

Monday 9 September 2019 2:53pm

The Highland Clearances and the Colonisation of New Zealand, a biography of John McKenzie

Tom Brooking

An enlightening political biography of the Minister of Lands and Agriculture in the 1890s. John McKenzie was the legislator who 'burst up' the great pastoral estates and assisted the establishment of the small family farm in New Zealand.

Tom Brooking traces McKenzie's background as a child who witnessed the Highland Clearances, and as an immigrant of modest means who believed strongly in the right of ordinary people to own land. He points to the paradox that his legislation advanced the process by which Maori were dispossessed of their land.

Published 1996