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Scottish Ethnicity and the Making of New Zealand Society, 1850-1930

Tanja Bueltmann

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The Scots accounted for around a quarter of all UK-born immigrants to New Zealand between 1861 and 1945, but have only been accorded scant attention in New Zealand histories, specialist immigration histories and Scottish Diaspora Studies. This is peculiar because the flow of Scots to New Zealand, although relatively unimportant to Scotland, constituted a sizable element to the country's much smaller population. Seen as adaptable, integrating relatively more quickly than other ethnic migrant groups in New Zealand, the Scots' presence was obscured by a fixation on the romanticised shortbread tin façade of Scottish identity overseas.

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About the Author

Dr Tanja Bueltmann is Senior Lecturer in History at Northumbria University. Her recent monograph Scottish Ethnicity and the Making of New Zealand Society, 1850 to 1930 (Edinburgh, 2011) was short-listed for the Saltire Society Scottish History Book of the Year. She has published widely on the history of the Scottish and English diasporas, co-editing Locating the English Diaspora, 1500-2010 (Liverpool, 2012). Bueltmann is Co-Investigator of the AHRC funded project 'Locating the Hidden Diaspora: The English in North America in Transatlantic Perspective, 1760-1950’.


Tanja Bueltmann's study is an impressive achievement and its deftly handled, comparative endeavour and succinct engagment with relevant theory bodes well for future work...

- Angela McCarthy, University of Otago, Scottish Historical Review

Scottish Ethnicity and the Making of New Zealand Society is clinically efficient, professional and deals with this subject in a very thorough manner. It is a welcome addition to scholarship on the Scottish Diaspora and should be very well received by both academics and casual readers alike.

- Erin C.M. Grant, University of Otago, History Scotland, Vol. 13 No. 1

This first-rate book confirms the importance of scholarly research on the still sparsely surveyed terrain of the shared and unshared ideas and actions among diverse settlers of British origin, whose varying levels of visibility are brought into the spotlight in this study. It deserves a wide readership and will, I hope, encourage further research into similar and more recent periods of history, including other sets of British migrants in New Zealand and comparable sites of settlement.

- David Pearson, American Historical Review

This is an important book, rooted in impressive research, and it demonstrates how a study of associational culture has much to offer scholars of migration and diaspora

- D.A.J. MacPherson, Journal of British Studies

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