Marriage, Past and Present is a five-year research project (2014-19), supported by a Royal Society of New Zealand Rutherford Discovery Fellowship, that aims to trace the evolution in the practice, politics and meaning of marriage in New Zealand from the nineteenth century and up to the present day. Our project is archival-based, drawing upon written and visual sources produced by the state as well as individuals and held in a wide range of archival institutions, libraries and museums across New Zealand. It will produce the first book length study on the history of marriage and married life in New Zealand. It will also produce new knowledge on significant contemporary social questions and issues associated with private life and the family. In examining marriage and its past we hope to utilise historically-informed research to address contemporary social and policy debates about the family.
Image Credit: An intimate family portrait taken at Tokaanau in April 1946 by George Silk. Courtesy of Getty Images, United States.