This thesis is based on the oral histories of social workers,
birth parents, and adopted people who have personal experience of
‘closed stranger adoption’ in relation to New Zealand Māori.
Viewed collectively their histories, and my own analysis,
demonstrate the legislative sleight of hand and societal
illusions, which bound all parties involved in an uncomfortable
and contrived silence.
Between 1955 and 1985, over 80,000 children in New Zealand were
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