A post-foundational history of the Treaty reveals that both its making in 1840 and the significance it came to acquire in the years that followed was highly contingent upon particular historical circumstances. The principal reason why so much of the historical work done on the Treaty fails to maintain that razor-thin line between political advocacy and scholarly objectivity can be said to lie in the fact that it amounts to foundational history. Historians try to discern in a particular historical event, in this case the Treaty of Waitangi, some norm or another that they believe created, or should have created, or could still create, the foundations of the nation. For some time, the norms that historians espied in the Treaty were moral. Keith Sinclair argued that the British approach to the Treaty had been honest and honourable since it sought to lay the basis for a just society in which Maori and Pakeha could live together in peace and harmony.
|Title of host publication||Indigenous Peoples and the State|
|Subtitle of host publication||International Perspectives on the Treaty of Waitangi|
|Editors||Mark Hickford, Carwyn James|
|Place of Publication||Abingdon Oxon UK|
|Number of pages||17|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|
|Name||Indigenous Peoples and the Law|