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Letters and Art in New Zealand


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Few New Zealanders know the literature of their own country as does E. H. McCormick; few are so aware of the types of culture this country has seen, and few so sensitive to the changing currents in our social life. Although he is an unusually perceptive critic of both literature and art, E. H. McCormick has preferred to trace the development of New Zealand letters and art as a social phenomenon rather than as independent departments, linked only by a tenuous thread to the national life. His exceedingly stimulating account of what men and women have written in New Zealand and the social attitudes revealed by their writings is a type of study that has not previously been attempted on the same scale in this country. In spite of his specialised purpose, Mr McCormick has made a very comprehensive survey of both letters and art, and his continuous criticism of books and pictures from the seventeenth century to the twentieth fills a conspicuous gap in our literature. This book will help its readers to understand New Zealand as well as to appreciate what New Zealanders have painted or written.

A full list of the series of New Zealand Centennial Surveys will be found on the back of this jacket.