Thursday, May 03, 2018

Ghosting the road

Here's one of the publicity statements for Ghost South Road. We're hoping that the book has a little something for everyone. Come and have a beer, or a kava, or both, at the launch on May the 17th
NEW BOOK FOLLOWS A ROAD THROUGH TIME AS WELL AS SPACE
Ordinarily we think of the Great South Road as a way to get from one place to another - as a route to work or to a shop or a sports field.
But the Great South Road is a path through time as well as space. In the century and a half since it was built, the road has seen a series of terrible and strange events - an invasion, a war, refugee flows, riots, outbreaks of religious hysteria, epidemics, and much more.
Relics and reminders of this history - eroding forts, cemeteries stuffed with soldiers and pox victims, churches with bullet holes in their walls, bridges where bandits waited, pubs the police loved to raid, parks where lovers congregated - sit beside the traffic of South Auckland and the Waikato.
Since 2012 writer Scott Hamilton and photographers Paul Janman and Ian Powell have been journeying along the Great South Road.
Hamilton, Janman and Powell have followed the route of the imperial army that marched out of Auckland and invaded the Waikato Kingdom in 1863.
They have visited the roadside glades and forests where Maori refugees driven from Auckland by the war camped.
They have located the churchyard where the forgotten first Anzacs - white Australian and Pakeha New Zealand volunteers who fought together in 1863 - are buried together.
They have traced the path of the near-disastrous flight of Leila Adair, the scantily clad pioneer aviatrix, who outraged and titillated the conservative citizens of Hamilton with her new-fangled balloon in 1894.
They have followed the trail of the billions of rats who poured down the road from Auckland in 1900, infected with the bubonic plague, and visited Maori villages blockaded and starved by white militia during the smallpox epidemic of 1913.
They have searched for bullet casings left by the pair of stylish gay bandits who politely robbed Auckland motorists in the 1920s.
They have crawled through a cave where communist fugitives printed their banned newspaper during World War Two.
They have watched road workers sing an old Tongan lullaby beside a concrete mixer amidst the afternoon traffic in Papakura.
They have interviewed boy racers and religious maniacs, artists and road crash victims, old soldiers and new cops.
Ghost South Road is a book made with Hamilton's words and Janman and Powell's pictures. It includes thirteen chapters, and hundreds of black and white and colour images. Ghost South Road was commissioned by Auckland's mayor, and has been published with the help of Creative New Zealand.
Ghost South Road shows that both the history and the present of of Aotearoa New Zealand are wilder and weirder than anyone imagined.

14 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Such crap - starting the bullshit again. Puffing off. Bubonic plague in NZ in your dreams mate. what rubbish.

3:56 pm  
Anonymous Scott said...

Looks like someone needs to read the book.

The great Kendrick Smithyman wrote about the bubonic rats of Auckland and their invasion of the Waikato in his poem 'Pests':

The city wasn’t ready for it.
Nor were the city rats. They ran.
Away down south in Taranaki a district medical
officer – you have to imagine him, the buggy,
those (were they even metalled?) roads,
him properly dressed as became a medical officer
doing his rounds, banalities of what it means
to be a pioneer – noticed dead rats.
Here. There. A crop unusual.
He began tracing.
They did not occur southwards. The trail,
it grew into a trail, retired northwards, north
from Taranaki, through the King Country, through
Waikato, a trail of dead rats. Led back
to Auckland.
7
There they were, caught on the run.
The mid-, the northward, parts of the Island
marked with dead rats. And beforehand,
what no photographer saw, the exodus:
rats running from rats, sick rats running
from dying rats, as far as Taranaki,
running from
their unkind.
8
Because
this was late autumn when Muir & Moodie
or Winkelmann or whoever set up his tripod,
focussed, judged exposure but didn’t get
everything on the plate, and
they weren’t
dressed for it. Cold of airs, force of winds,
not allowed for. The rats were
sluggish, their fleas were sluggish, a common
(general? genetic?) debility followed,
a misfiring social engineering
which left
a plague reservoir in downtown Auckland
which gradually drained from
the fleapit picturehouses, fruit stores,
eating places, leaving scarcely
even a memory

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8:31 pm  
Blogger matway said...

نقدم لكم بعض الخدمات فى الاعمال المنزلية الممثله فى التنظيف الشامل للمنزل ومكافحة الحشرات وعزل الاسطح وكشف تسربات المياة ونقل الاثاث بكل انوعه كل ذلك يساعد فى الحصول علي مظهر رائع بواسطة افضل الفنيين والمتخصصين فى هذا المجال باستخدام احدث المعدات.
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2:33 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

When I read this some time ago thought that this poem about rats was a dream that Smithyman had. One of his dream-based poems. He uses the term 'fleapit' for the picture theatres which we also called 'the flics' that we used to go to in the 50s.

Be good to pick up a copy of your book Scott.

10:16 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Taking a leaf out of your own book Scott - why would I bother to read the book when I know its crap. What goes around comes around. You trash plenty of books without reading them, so why are you suprised when other people do the same to you??? Oh, no he thinks he's special and the normal rules dont apply to him. Of course people will read HIS book even though they know its crap. i can just tell that anything you write is rubbish... don't need to read it.. can warn people off in advance. Dont waste you time mate with this BS.

2:40 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I read this some time ago thought that this poem about rats was a dream that Smithyman had. One of his dream-based poems. He uses the term 'fleapit' for the picture theatres which we also called 'the flics' that we used to go to in the 50s. https://topacademictutors.com/college-term-paper-help/

4:05 pm  
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2:34 pm  
Blogger hewaidashalaby said...

( نقدم لكم بعض الخدمات فى الاعمال المنزلية الممثله فى التنظيف الشامل للمنزل ومكافحة الحشرات وعزل الاسطح وكشف تسربات المياة ونقل الاثاث بكل انوعه كل ذلك يساعد فى الحصول علي مظهر رائع بواسطة افضل الفنيين والمتخصصين فى هذا المجال باستخدام احدث المعدات)
شركة عزل اسطح بابها
شركة كشف تسربات بابها
شركة تنظيف خزانات بابها
شركة مكافحة حشرات بابها
شركة عزل اسطح بخميس مشيط
شركة كشف تسربات بخميس مشيط
شركة مكافحة حشرات بخميس مشيط
شركة تنظيف منازل بالطائف
شركة نقل عفش بالطائف

2:04 pm  
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Blogger kezia McDonald said...

Taking a leaf out of your own book Scott - why would I bother to read the book when I know its crap. What goes around comes around. You trash plenty of books without reading them, so why are you suprised when other people do the same to you??? Oh, no he thinks he's special and the normal rules dont apply to him. https://liveassignmenthelp.com https://topacademictutors.com/

11:04 pm  

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