The Story of New Zealand 2 Volume Set: Past and Present, Savage and Civilized

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Arthur S. Thomson (1816-60) was a Scottish military surgeon and medical scientist who was posted to New Zealand in the late 1840s. During his eleven years in the country, settlement increased and British sovereignty over the colony was extended. Thomson felt that previous historical accounts of New Zealand all demonstrated a certain political, colonial or religious bias, and decided to write his own comprehensive history of the islands, which was published in 1859. Volume 1 deals with the physical geography and history of the islands, the culture and way of life of the Maoris, New Zealand's discovery by Europeans, and the introduction of Christianity. Volume 2 justifies the progress of British colonisation by arguing that it brings the benefits of 'civilisation' to the native people.