Faculty of Arts


Coming of the Maori: Archaeology of Aotearoa (New Zealand)

Please note: this is archived course information from 2018 for ANTHRO 207.


In this course we use archaeological evidence to investigate the origins and prehistory of Māori, beginning in the ancestral homeland of East Polynesia and continuing through to the early Māori-European contact period (c. 1840).

We consider ongoing debates about when and how New Zealand was first settled, the challenges faced by tropical Polynesians adapting to a temperate environment and other aspects of Māori settlements, subsistence economy, material culture and sociopolitical life over time. The course emphasises how archaeological techniques can be used to understand cultural dynamics in the past, and in particular those relevant to Aotearoa New Zealand’s early human history.

Learning Outcomes:

A student who successfully completes this course will have the opportunity to:

  • Acquire knowledge of the archaeological history of Aotearoa New Zealand and pre-European Māori origins and lifeways
  • Understand and carry out library research and critical analysis
  • Acquire skills in academic literacy, critical thinking and cross-cultural perspective

View the course syllabus

Availability 2018

Semester 2


Coordinator(s) Dr Ben Davies


Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History, Atholl Anderson, Judith Binney, Aroha Harris, 2014. Auckland: Bridget Williams Books


Coursework only; no exam


ANTHRO 207: 15.0 points


60 points passed 



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