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Lachy Paterson imageBA, PGDipArts (Otago), RSA/Cambridge CELTA, PhD (Otago)




Much of Lachy's primary research involves niupepa (Māori-language newspapers) and other texts of the mid-nineteenth and early-twentieth century. From these and other sources he explores the social, political and religious discourses promulgated within these publications, and has published widely on this topic.

His most recent monograph (co-written with Professor Angela Wanhalla) is He Reo Wāhine: Māori Women’s Voices from the Nineteenth Century (Auckland University Press, 2017). More recently he co-edited (with Professor Tony Ballantyne and Professor Angela Wanhalla) Indigenous Textual Cultures: Reading and Writing in the Age of Global Empire (Duke University Press, 2020).

Lachy’s most recent project, has been working with Angela Wanhalla on “Te Hau Kāinga: Histories and Legacies of the Māori Home Front, 1939-45”, supported by the Royal Society Te Aparangi’s Marsden Fund. This project explores the impact of war at home on ordinary Māori families and communities, and on Māori society more broadly, during and after the conflict. Two publications are expected in 2024, one in English and the other in te reo Māori.


As seen below, Lachy has supervised a wide range of postgraduate students completing PhD and Masters theses, as well as Masters and Honours-level dissertations.  His students have included various topics relating to Māori or Indigenous history, theology, education, language and culture, some written in te reo Māori, researching a wide array of historical or contemporary issues.

  • Megan Pōtiki, PhD (2023), Historic Language Loss at Ōtākou (Submitted)
  • Keomailani Eaton, MIndS (2021), Aloha ʻĀina: Land, language and Kanaka ʻŌiwi Identity
  • Pania Tahau-Hodges MIndS (2021) The Protection and Development of Indigenous Knowledge/Mātauranga Māori and Cultural Expression in the New Zealand Publishing Industry
  • Matiu Payne, PhD (2020), Tamaiti whāngai in a Ngāti Mutunga context
  • Kelli Te Maiharoa, PhD (2020), Māori peace-making traditions
  • Tania Oxenham, MEd (2017), Te Awa: an essay-writing model for first year degree Māori students in tertiary studies
  • John Birnie, PhD (2017), Learner-centredness in the teaching of te reo Māori
  • Gianna Leoni, PhD (2016), Mā te taki te kāhui ka tau. Te waiaro ki te reo Māori i ngā hinonga kāwanatanga. (Use of te reo Māori in government departments. Submitted in Māori.)
  • Kate Timms, PhD (2013), Language policies for te reo Māori in New Zealand and Gaelic in Scotland
  • Matiu Payne, MIndS (2013), Case Studies: Whāngai adoptions and the Native Land Court
  • Michelia Ward, MIndS (2012), New Zealand Trade Aid and the Quecha of Peru
  • Alexander Stevens, MIndS (2012), Impact of mispronunciation of Māori names
  • Eilis Haden, MIndS (2010), Youth work in Derry, Northern Ireland
  • Hauiti Hākopa, PhD (2011), Indigenous digital mapping
  • Hone Te Rire, MIndS (2009), The impact of Christianity on Māori identity
  • Craig Hall, PGDipArts (2008), Māori-language teaching pedagogies
  • Jacinta Paranihi, BA(Hons) (2008), Case study: Post-contact hapū formation
  • Emily Owen, MA (Massey, 2008), Early New Zealand Whaling
  • Vic Evans, MA (Massey, 2007), Studio pottery movement in Nelson, 1956–1976

Research Grants

  • A.C. Wanhalla and L. Paterson (2018) Marsden Fund Te Hau Kāinga: Histories and Legacies of the Māori Home Front, 1939-1945 ($746,000)
  • Paterson, L. (2008). University of Otago Research Grant: $7382. Project title: Women Workers of the Presbyterian Māori Mission.
  • Paterson, L. (2006). Massey University Research Grant: $4950. Project title: Presbyterian Deaconesses within Māori Communities.


  • 1999: University of Otago Prestigious Scholarship
  • 1997: Sir Peter Buck (Te Rangihiroa) Prize in Maori Studies (200-level)
  • 1997: Sir Peter Buck (Te Rangihiroa) Prize in Maori Studies (300-level)


Thomas, D. Q., Paterson, L., Wanhalla, A. C., Christie, S. C., & Newman, E. M. (2024). Māori and field hockey from 1900: More than a game. International Journal of the History of Sport, 2309945. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/09523367.2024.2309945 Journal - Research Article

Paterson, L., & Wanhalla, A. (2023, November). Visualising Māori 'citizenship' on New Zealand's Second World War home front. Verbal presentation at the 'Envisaging Citizenship' International Symposium, Melbourne, Australia. Conference Contribution - Verbal presentation and other Conference outputs

Paterson, L. (2023, October). The 'why' of The New Zealand Wars: And why are the First Taranaki War and Waikato War so significant?. Catalyst Kōrero, Catalyst Trust, Queenstown, New Zealand. [Research Presentation]. Other Research Output

Paterson, L. (2023). Race and revolution: Haiti and the Kīngitanga, 1863. In A. Wanhalla, L. Ryan & C. Nurka (Eds.), Aftermaths: Colonialism, violence and memory in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific. (pp. 157-166). Dunedin, New Zealand: Otago University Press. Chapter in Book - Research

Paterson, L., & Warbrick, P. (Eds.). (2023). Journal of New Zealand Studies, 35(1) [Special Issue: He Tuhinga Tuku Iho: Texts, contexts, resonances]. [Guest Editors]. Other - Edited Journal

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