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Culture and Society

Pre-1840 contact

What was the state of relations between Maori and Europeans in the unstable years before the Treaty of Waitangi was signed?

Holidays and events

Explore the background to the holidays and anniversaries that stand out on today's calendar and those that loomed large in times past.

The arts and entertainment

Playing pop records, watching TV or curling up with a good book are activities at the heart of NZ life, especially when the sounds and words tell stories with a Kiwi accent


A transport revolution, spearheaded by shipping and railways, has transformed New Zealand over the past 150 years.

Health and welfare

The achievement of better health care and more affordable housing for New Zealanders has not come without sacrifice and often painful struggle.

Decade studies

Key events in New Zealand history broken down by decade


Discover how New Zealanders have played, watched and even protested at sports events over a century and a half. What does it say about our cultural identity?

Crime and punishment

Discover how the New Zealand justice system has dealt with some of its most notorious criminals, and how it has, at times, dished out the ultimate penalty.


Read, watch and listen to stories of European immigration out to New Zealand over two centuries.


Why do the ways New Zealanders eat, play, exercise and dress provide colourful and important cultural markers?


While many New Zealand communities have thrived, others have become ghost towns, victims of changing economic and social forces.