Seminar: David Hall, ‘Emerging from a snug and safe cocoon: New Zealand farm wives and feminism in the 20th century’

New Zealand’s community of European farm wives shared a deeply ingrained philosophy in the mid-20th century and outsiders described the community as immune to change. But how did that community respond to the surge in feminism, women ‘s liberation and towards a more permissive society that took place globally and in New Zealand from the 1960s onwards? A Lincoln University report described New Zealand farming as ‘feminised’ by the 1990s, did that demonstrate a successful intrusion of feminism into a community seen as immune to change two generations earlier?

After completing a career in space science, David Hall moved to New Zealand at the end of 2010 and from 2012 did doctoral research at Victoria University on New Zealand’s emergence from a colonial economy between 1945 and 1975. He successfully completed his PhD thesis in 2016 and had a book, based on his thesis, published in 2017 in the Palgrave Macmillan Economics History Series. Whilst studying the rural community during his PhD research he noted changes in the lives of farm wives during the second half of the 20th century and since completing his PhD has investigated those changes.

 Venue:            Old Kirk 406 (F L Wood Seminar Room)

Date:               Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Time:              12:10pm to 1:15pm

For more information: Contact Professor Charlotte Macdonald (; 04 463 6761).