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Being Maori in the City

Being Maori in the City: Indigenous Everyday Life in Auckland

Copyright Date: 2013
Pages: 368
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  • Book Info
    Being Maori in the City
    Book Description:

    Grounded in an ethnography of everyday life in the city of Auckland,Being Māori in the Cityis an investigation of what being Maori means today.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-6398-5
    Subjects: Sociology, Anthropology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. List of Figures
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xi-xiv)
  5. A Note on Language
    (pp. xv-2)
  6. Introduction: Māori ʺSitting at the Tableʺ
    (pp. 3-20)

    Now in New Zealand, as at no other time, public debates include discussions about constitutional arrangements, emerging multiculturalism, and liberal democracy. In December 2010, the government announced a three-year constitutional review to examine, among other things, electoral issues, the role of the 1840 Treaty of Waitangi¹ and Māori interests, and New Zealand as a constitutional monarchy versus that of a republic with a written constitution. Some Māori individuals and representative bodies, such asiwi(tribal) authorities, insisted they have their say in the government review and are also running their own constitutional review process.² Māori, with renewed vigour, are stressing...

  7. 1 An Overview of Māori and New Zealand History
    (pp. 21-47)

    This brief historical overview is designed to give a better understanding of Māori experiences and practices in the city today. It touches on the colonial era but its main focus is on the period following the ʺurban driftʺ from the postwar years until the present day. It highlights the relationship of the New Zealand state to Māori throughout history and the stateʹs impact on Māori search for greater autonomy. It is widely accepted that the state and its policies have a direct effect on populations, on social dynamics in society at large, and in urban contexts in particular. Global dynamics...

  8. 2 Māori Lives in Auckland
    (pp. 48-86)

    This chapter is an introduction to Māori in the city. I examine the situation of Māori life in Auckland in all its diversity and the ways that Māori express their experiences – of the city and Auckland in particular, of their relationships with other Māori, and of the nation – and their sense of home in terms of comfort.

    In terms of surface area, Auckland is a big, spread-out city, since most of its 1.5 million¹ inhabitants live in one-storey, single-family houses, although this has started to change with the current real estate boom. Auckland is New Zealandʹs biggest multicultural...

  9. 3 The Marae: A Symbol of Continuity
    (pp. 87-105)

    Central to Māori ceremonial and community life is the traditional Māori meeting place and ceremonial centre – the group of fenced buildings calledmarae.Maraestand traditionally on family and tribal lands but are now also part of the urban landscape. They constitute an important contemporary symbol of identity and continuity and have become a key site for collective cultural and sociopolitical affirmation.

    It has long been noted that Māori belong to theirwhānau,hapū(subtribe), andiwi(tribe). They also belong tomarae. New evidence put forward by Sissons (2010) has led to the idea that Māori society might...

  10. 4 Ways of Life in a Māori House
    (pp. 106-147)

    Before I went to New Zealand, I had imagined myself walking down the streets of Auckland every day on a regular route, meeting Māori people on my way who could introduce me to their world and help me to understand how they maintain their identity in an urban setting. But the city is large and spread out. And Māori are not, generally speaking, the kind of people that you meet in public places.

    I arrived at the end of February 2001 and immediately enrolled in Māori language courses at the University of Auckland, which gave me the opportunity to meet...

  11. 5 The Whānau, Past and Present
    (pp. 148-178)

    The ʺordinaryʺ homes in the city where ʺtraditionalʺ Māori principles and values are applied are key urban sites for maintaining extended family relationships and transmitting Māori principles that offer both continuity with the ancestral past and guidelines for change. They are places in the city wherewhānaumembers converge, where they secure connections to the past, to memories, and to ancestral worlds; transmit traditional knowledge and the Māori language; maintain links to the rural home, share news and gossip about the people and themaraein the country; and make important decisions about family, children, land, and politics.

    Living with...

  12. 6 A Practical Universe of Meanings
    (pp. 179-198)

    Living with Māori families made me realize the practical importance of thewhānauin daily life and as a symbol of the affirmation of Māori identities and of the creation of their space and place in the city and greater society. The meaning, principles, and values of thewhānauhave changed through colonization and urbanization. But they have always remained important and continue to be so. And as thewhānauʹs principles and values have emerged and unfolded through the practices of daily life, its universe of meanings in relation to other Māori and non-Māori universes of meanings has been reaffirmed...

  13. 7 At the Heart of a Politics of Differentiation
    (pp. 199-233)

    Since the 1970s, the Māori cultural renaissance and the global forces favouring indigenous and minority rights have renewed thewhānauuniverse of meanings and transformed it into a powerful symbol. These dynamics also allowed non-kinwhānau, also calledkaupapa whānau(common-purposewhānau, also referred to in English askaupapa-basedwhānau), to emerge. And they reinforced the conscious desire to perpetuate or to simply participate in the universe of meanings of thewhānau, seen as central to Māori cultural identity, decolonization, and survival.

    A dichotomy between Māori and Pākehā worlds emerges from Māori narratives. The boundaries between these worlds, apparently so...

  14. Conclusion: Interconnected Places and Autonomous Spaces
    (pp. 234-254)

    Thewhānauand Māori houses in the city, along withmaraeand other Māori meeting places, are important sites and spaces for cultural recovery and affirmation, but they also allow for mobilization and engagement in the larger world. We have seen that Māori engage with the larger society on their own terms; that is, through the upholding of their identity as Māori and by affirmingwhānauvalues, Māori ways of being, and Māori places such asmaraeand houses based onmaraeprinciples. This affirmation is part of a larger movement that is creating places and spaces for Māori in...

  15. Appendix: Profiles of Interviewees (2001–2002, formal interviews only)
    (pp. 255-260)
  16. Glossary
    (pp. 261-268)
  17. Notes
    (pp. 269-296)
  18. References
    (pp. 297-330)
  19. Index
    (pp. 331-342)
  20. Back Matter
    (pp. 343-345)