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  1. The first of two excerpts from this documentary.

  2. The second of two excerpts from this documentary.

  3. The credits from this documentary.


A Moment in Time is an armchair interview with historian Michael King OBE filmed in 1991. King discusses his early influences, motivation, and distinctive publications. King died in a car accident with his wife Maria Jungowska in 2004, and his reflections in A Moment in Time are testament to the tragedy of that loss: "We've got to be able to trace our own footsteps and listen to our own voices or we'll cease to be New Zealanders, or being New Zealanders will cease to have any meaning."


A perspective by Tony Hiles 28.09.2008

A Moment in Time is nearly forty minutes of an archival armchair interview with author and historian Michael King OBE (1945-2004). It was filmed in 1991 (shot by Rewa Harre, directed by ...

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It was very moving for me, [...] to find documents written by Moriori themselves in the 1850s and 1860s which told the story, which listed all the names of those who had been killed and to know that these documents had been written by people crippled with arthritis and tuberculosis, going blind from cataracts, [...] as messages to their descendants and messages to posterity. And I was quite affected to find these things and to be able to give those people a voice again in the 20th century. That to me, probably, was the most satisfying part of that whole project. 
I set to work in 1986 on a Moriori book that was published in 1989. Now I haven't closed off that kind of work at all but I'm simply in the position where I would only do that kind of thing if I was asked by the people concerned to do it and had their full cooperation. 
Some of the journalists that I worked with found it an odd thing for me to be doing. It didn't seem to have occurred to anyone professionally in journalism up to that time that to be a good well-equipped reporter you ought to be able to do something like speak māori.