18thC British foreign policy and European diplomacy

After writing an MA thesis on the Assassins in the time of the Crusades, Geoff’s main research field for his PhD was British foreign policy and European diplomacy in the eighteenth century. This interest produced five academic articles and a large book, The Life of the Fourth Earl of Rochford (1717-1781): Eighteenth Century British Courtier, Diplomat and Statesman (2 vols, 2010).

Black November: The 1918 Influenza Pandemic in New Zealand. Revised, expanded and illustrated second edition (Canterbury University Press, 2005) 325 pp ISBN 1-877257-35-4

Social History of Medicine

Geoff’s second research field has been the social history of medicine, starting with his pioneering book Black November: the 1918 Influenza Epidemic in New Zealand (1988).

This was the world’s first country-level study of the 1918 pandemic based on individual death records. An enlarged and illustrated second edition, Black November: the 1918 Influenza pandemic in New Zealand (2005), was short-listed in the History section of the 2006 Montana New Zealand Book Awards.

In addition to Black November, he has written ten academic articles and two more books about the 1918 flu making him New Zealand’s leading authority on the 1918 influenza pandemic.

Christchurch Changing: an illustrated history, enlarged second edition (Canterbury University Press, 2008), 190 pp

Local history of Christchurch, New Zealand

His third research field has been the local history of Christchurch, New Zealand, in which he has published eight books and three biographies.

A Scientific Welsh Eye-Surgeon: the short life of Llewellyn Powell, MD (1843-79), Christchurch’s First Medical Officer of Health (Christchurch, Hawthorne Press & Cotter Medical History Trust, 2020), 144 pp ISBN 978-0-473-54361-7

Current Projects

Geoff’s current project is about the medical men of nineteenth century Christchurch in relation to public health. The aim is to produce a biographical dictionary with over 100 entries, and a study of public health reforms 1850-1900.

See Online Publications.