Re-inventing New Zealand: Essays on the arts and the media by Roger Horrocks


ISBN: 978-0-9922453-8-2
444PP | 225mm x 150mm
May 2016

With its unusual breadth and depth, this book is the harvest of a lifetime of thinking about the arts and media in New Zealand by someone with ‘a knowledge’ (says Murray Edmond) ‘that combines industry practice with academic insight in a way that is unrivalled in New Zealand.’

The book reflects on the huge changes to our culture produced by the hippie upheaval of the 1960s, new forms of feminism, the Māori renaissance, radical styles of philosophy, economic extremism, and the digital age. Such changes have transformed our literature, visual arts, music, film, and television, and re-invented our sense of place. The book offers insights into each of those arts and each of those themes.

A personal memoir by the author sets the scene for this richly varied selection of 21 essays, from 1983 to 2016.

“These essays are seminal contributions, central to the major intellectual and cultural changes that define the New Zealand we live in today.” – Wystan Curnow


Dr Roger Horrocks is an Emeritus Professor of the University of Auckland. He took early retirement from the University of Auckland in 2004 so he could concentrate on writing. Prior to that he was the Foundation Head of the Department of Film, Television & Media Studies. His previous books include:

Song of the Ghost in the Machine [poetry], Wellington, Victoria University Press, 2014.
Zizz!: The Life and Art of Len Lye, ed. and introduced by Roger Horrocks. Wellington, Awa Press, 2014.
Television in New Zealand: Programming the Nation, ed. Roger Horrocks and Nick Perry. Melbourne, Oxford University Press, 2004.
Len Lye: A Biography, Auckland, Auckland University Press, 2001. [Finalist for Montana NZ Book Awards, 2002.]