Bronwyn Elsmore is well known for her substantial body of non-fiction writing published over many years. In particular, her works on Maori Religious Movements are regarded and consulted as definitive sources in Aotearoa-New Zealand and internationally.
Like Them That Dream – the Maori and the Old Testament
The arrival of European missionaries in New Zealand had an immense impact on Maori society. Like Them That Dream tells the intriguing story of early interaction between Maori and missionary, leading to the many distinctive responses to the arrival of Christianity.
The book’s first two parts consider how the Christian word was spread and how Maori responded, explaining the identification they felt with the Israelites of the Old Testament. The third part relates the rise of indigenous religious movements, from the early Papahurihia through Pai Marire, Ringatu and the Parihaka Movement, and the later incarnations of the Arowhenua Movement in the South Island and what remains of today’s leading Maori church, Ratana.
Mana From Heaven – A Century of Maori Religious Movements in New Zealand
In the period from 1820 to 1920, more than 60 prophets arose in New Zealand leading distinctive movements in response to the Christian message. Although many served as vehicles for social protest, their movements were primarily attempts to affirm spiritual and racial worth in the face of rapid cultural change. Mana From Heaven records the evolution of Maori spirituality from early contact to the end of the prophetic period. Regarded as the definitive work in its field, the book analyses the principal influences in Maori religious movements during the first century of European settlement and gives vivid portrayals of the individuals who shaped the Maori churches of today.
‘A fascinating publication recording a kaleidoscope of Maori responses to the missionary’ – Otago Daily Times ‘An important book by a remarkable woman’ - Dominion Sunday-TImes
‘Its comprehensiveness is unlikely to be surpassed’ – New Zealand Journal of History.
Te Kohititanga Marama – New Moon, New World: The Religion of Matenga Tamati
On the isolated Hawke’s Bay beach of Korito, near Wairoa, twelve huge totara logs bear testimony to the vision of a remarkable yet little-known religious leader. Matenga Tamati saw himself as the true successor to Te Kooti, answering the spiritual need of Maori at the end of the nineteenth century. The religious movement he founded, Te Kohititanga Marama, exerted great influence in the Wairoa district around the turn of the twentieth century – yet is all but forgotten. In this book Bronwyn Elsmore has gathered invaluable oral evidence to complement the scant published sources, piecing together a picture of the beliefs, values, practice and legacy of the Kohiti religion. While only the totara logs at Korito remain as physical evidence of this extraordinary prophet and healer, Te Kohititanga Marama ensures that Te Matenga and his religion of the New Moon take their rightful place in the histort of Aotearoa-New Zealand.
Will Wandafar – Writings of Bernard Teague, Nagare, Palmerston North, 2003 Southern Edge – New writers from Manukau Counties, Writer in Manukau Libraries, Manukau City, 2006
Additional non-fiction works Over her writing career, Bronwyn has a
large number of shorter non-fiction works published.
Contributions to anthologies,
including: Religions of New Zealanders, Peter Donovan (ed), Dunmore, 1990, & 2nd ed. 1996 Can Humanity Survive? World Religions and the Environment, Dr J. Veitch (ed), Awareness Book Co., 1996 Testing the Global Ethic, Peggy Morgan and Marcus Braybrooke (eds), World Congress of Faiths/Conexus Press, Oxford, UK/Ada, MI, USA, 1998. Overview of World Religions (Polynesia), Philtar, Lancaster, 2000
Journal Articles, in publications including: New Zealand Historic Places,Dictionary
of New Zealand Biography, NZ Journal of East Asian Studies, The American
Historical Review 88 Full-page features for Newspapers in
Education; and numerous others.
Additional: Radio &
television interviews on specialist subjects.
Books now out of print Creedism – Religious Prejudice in New Zealand, Nagare, Palmerston North, 1995 Religionz – A Guide to Religions in New Zealand, Reed, Auckland, 2006