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Friends of The Hocken Collections - Talk

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  • Wed 19 Jun, 5:30pm – 6:30pm


Hocken Collections, 90 Anzac Ave, Dunedin


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission

Dr Warwick Brunton, Honorary Senior Lecturer, Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, University of Otago, will talk on a fascinating, yet enigmatic, visitor to Dunedin in 1861-2.

Scottish psychiatrist and scientific polymath Dr Lauder Lindsay spent three months in Otago during a year’s leave from work. Lindsay’s investigations into Otago’s botany, geology, mental health services, natural resources, science and education made him an advocate for forest conservation, acclimatisation, university, museum, hospital for mental diseases, and environmental sanitation in Dunedin. Some 47 of Lindsay’s published works relate to New Zealand, about 17 per cent of all his publications.

Dr Brunton says that: “Lindsay also helped the fledgling University of Otago and saw it as a model for tertiary education at Dundee.”

In his talk, Dr Brunton will discuss why Lindsay’s meteoric life still fascinates scholars. Northern hemisphere writers have tended to critique his research streams on cholera and animal psychology. Antipodean scholars, especially in Dunedin, have emphasised aspects of his practical professional and scientific agenda to develop natural resources, institutions and policies in Otago and New Zealand.

“Akin to rebuilding Humpty Dumpty,” Dr Brunton said, “New Zealand scholars are using fresh sources of information to help explain Lindsay’s research and career choices, complex personality and the impact of personal tragedies upon his short but significant life.”

The talk is organised by the Friends of the Hocken Library and will be held in the Hocken Library Seminar Room, Anzac Avenue. This is an open event and those interested are welcome to attend.

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