Diversity & civil rights
For most of the 20th century, New Zealand’s dominant players were heterosexual, Pakeha blokes – male European New Zealanders.
But in the 1970s and 80s, women, gay people, and other marginalised groups started speaking out. Some issues polarised the nation, like the 1981 Springbok rugby tour and the 1985 Homosexual Law Reform Bill.
By the century’s end, however, New Zealand had become more inclusive. ‘They’ had become part of ‘us’.
Find out about 20th century items in Te Papa's collections.
Can you survive in the early 20th century, identify famous New Zealanders, and guess which decade you're in?
Find out about our education programmes and the free teacher preview.