Archaeology and history of the Chinese in southern New Zealand during the nineteenth century : a study of acculturation, adaptation, and change
Ritchie, Neville A.
Amongst the thousands who swarmed into New Zealand last century in quest of gold were some 10,000 Chinese. Although they were relatively 'late arrivals', within a few years they constituted one of the largest, and certainly the most conspicuous ethnic group on the goldfields. They differed not only in appearance but also in material culture and outlook. Whereas other nationalities among the goldseekers tended to rapidly assimilate with the dominant Anglo-European population, the Chinese were perceived 'to be different', and 'unwilling to adopt European ways' . They also differed in that from the outset the majority came as sojourners rather than settlers. As economic conditions in New Zealand deteriorated in the latter half of the 1870s, fear of economic competition lead to growing racial intolerance against them, culminating in repressive legislative restrictions on Chinese immigration. The first part of this study is a social history of the Chinese in New Zealand in the nineteenth century based on archival and ethnohistorical records. The second part utilises archaeological information- field evidence and studies of material culture, to provide a new perspective on the lifestyle of the Chinese miners. The historical and archaeological data is compared against information on traditional lifeways, to gain a measure of the Chinese miners' responses to their situation in New Zealand in terms of acculturation, adaptation, or change.
Advisor: Bayard, Donn; Anderson, Atholl
Degree Name: Doctor of Philosophy
Degree Discipline: Anthropology
Publisher: University of Otago
Research Type: Thesis