More than 350 men were imprisoned in New Zealand during World War I for sedition or resisting military service. Among them were numerous Canterbury pacifists, motivated to resist the tide of militarism and imperialism that was sweeping the world. 'I Don't Believe in Murder' is an alternative history of the years before, during and after New Zealand's involvement in World War I. It depicts the strong response made by Canterbury's labour, socialist and women's movements to pre-war compulsory military training and wartime conscription. Most importantly, it tells the stories of the people who made Christchurch the leading city in the peace movement, and of the young men who refused to fight, enduring imprisonment, hardships and loss of civil rights - all determined to follow their consciences and take a religious, humanitarian or political stand against war. Drawing on archives, newspapers and family collections, this is a crucial narrative for understanding the moral dilemmas posed by a country's participation in armed conflict.
History and Archaeology, Society and Social Sciences
H: 240mm W: 170mm