Women in History 2

Women in History 2

Essays on Women in New Zealand

Women in History 2 is currently out of print.

Women in History 2, first published in 1992, is the second of two volumes of essays bringing together pioneering research into the history of women in New Zealand.

The topics of the essays in this volume are as wide-ranging as the first, but take the subjects covered well into the twentieth century. Some essays open up a dialogue with Māori women’s history. Others deal with institutionalised ‘Magdalenes and moral imbeciles’ of the nineteenth century; the lives of dressmakers; ‘delinquents’ at the turn of the twentieth century; the ‘first lady graduates’; and farm women in the 1950s.


Judith Binney
Barbara Brookes
Margaret Tennant
Jane Malthus
Dorothy Page
Bronwyn Dalley
Jean-Marie O'Donnell
Deborah Montgomerie
Sally K. Parker
Anne Else

Table of contents


1. Some observations on the status of Māori women. Judith Binney
2. Māori and Pākehā Women: Many Histories, Divergent Pasts? Barbara Brookes and Margaret Tennant
3. 'Magdalens and Moral Imbeciles': Women's Homes in Nineteenth Century New Zealand. Margaret Tennant
4. Dressmakers in Nineteenth Century New Zealand. Jane Malthus
5. The First Lady Graduates: Women with Degrees from Otago University, 1885–1900. Dorothy Page
6. Women and Madness: A case-study of the Seacliff Asylum 1890–1920. Barbara Brookes
7. From Demi-mondes to Slaveys: Aspects of the Management of the Te Oranga Reformatory for Delinquent Young Women, 1900–1918. Bronwyn Dalley
8. 'Electric Servants' and the science of housework: Changing patterns of domestic work, 1935–1956. Jean-Marie O'Donnell
9. Man-powering Women: Industrial conscription during the Second World War. Deborah Montgomerie
10. A Golden Decade?: Farm Women in the 1950s. Sally K. Parker
11. 'The need is ever present': The motherhood of man movement and stranger adoption in New Zealand. Anne Else

Print publication:
Ebook publication: Dec 2018
Pages: 321
ISBN: 9780908912230
ISTC: A02201200002148E


Read Bronwyn Labrum's review in New Zealand Books.

'...What perhaps draws the various studies together is their authors' display of the multiple ways in which New Zealand women have confronted cultural expectations of proper femininity, of appropriate female behaviour, with compliance or resistance, sometimes with denial and now and then, tragically.' Patricia Grimshaw, New Zealand Journal of History, 1993