Who shaped the New Zealand nation in the middle years of the twentieth century? The Nationbuilders is a collection of linked essays on individuals and companies in the years from 1931 to 1984 who contributed in major ways to building a nation. The book captures the intertwining lives of politicians, their advisers and their mentors, as well as the ideas and experiences which drove them. While it focuses on economic strategy, the book also looks at the cultural, social, union, business, and foreign policy strands of nationbuilding. An original and provocative book, the essays cover Gordon Coates, Bernard Ashwin, Peter Fraser, James Fletcher, F. P. Walsh, Douglas Robb, Bill Sutch, Denis Glover, Colin McCahon, Norman Kirk, Sonja Davies, Bryan Philpott, New Zealand Steel, Robert Muldoon, Henry Lang and Bruce Jesson.
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Easton's authoritative, scholarly and sometimes mischievous writing style and his vast knowledge of New Zealand history give this book a hybrid vigour. – Richard Woodd, New Zealand Listener