Pacific histories

Date: Friday 28 June 2019, 6pm to 7pm
Cost: Free. Booking is not required. Koha from non-members appreciated.
Contact details: ATLOutreach@dia.govt.nz

Hear Toeolesulusulu Damon Salesa, a prizewinning scholar and Associate Professor of Pacific Studies, University of Auckland, speak at the annual Founder lecture, marking the date that the Turnbull Library opened to the public in 1920.

Hear about indigenous Pacific histories

Hear Toeolesulusulu Damon Salesa speak at the annual Founder lecture, marking the date that the Turnbull Library opened to the public in 1920. Dr Salesa is a prizewinning scholar and Associate Professor of Pacific Studies, University of Auckland and will speak about indigenous Pacific histories in this year of Tuia Encounters 250.

Tuia Encounters 250 marks 250 years since the first meetings between indigenous peoples and Europeans in NZ and the Pacific.

The Friends of the Turnbull Library will provide refreshments after the lecture.

Founder lecture

The annual Founder Lecture marks the date that the Turnbull Library opened to the public. The Library’s founder, Alexander Horsburgh Turnbull, was born on 14 September 1868. He developed a passion for publications in and about New Zealand and the Pacific. His collection comprised thousands of books, original artworks, prints and maps.

Alexander Turnbull died on 28 June 1918, leaving his collections to the state. The New Zealand Times (July 1918) described this as 'the most generous bequest to the people of New Zealand since the beginning of New Zealand time'.

These collections have grown to contain millions of items in various formats. This is a combined result of:

  • donation
  • bequest
  • legal deposit, and
  • targeted purchase.

Learn more about Alexander Turnbull and his library

A Friends of the Turnbull Library event.

About the speaker

Toeolesulusulu Damon Salesa is Associate Professor of Pacific Studies at the University of Auckland. A prizewinning scholar, he specialises in the studies of:

  • colonialism
  • empire
  • government, and
  • race.

He works on education, economics and development in the Pacific, NZ and Australia.

Dr Salesa began his studies at University of Auckland. After winning a Rhodes Scholarship, he completed his studies at Oxford University. He worked as Associate Professor of History, American Culture, and Asian/Pacific Islander American Studies at University of Michigan. In 2018 he became the first Pro Vice-Chancellor (Pacific), at the University of Auckland.

Recent publications

'Island time: New Zealand’s Pacific futures' (Wellington: Bridget Williams Books, 2017)

'Racial Crossings: Race, Intermarriage, and the Victorian British Empire' (USA: Oxford University Press, 2011)

associate-professor-damon-salesa
Associate Professor Damon Salesa: the first University of Auckland Pro-Vice Chancellor (Pacific) (Photograph from the University of Auckland website)