Narrating Indigenous Modernities: Transcultural Dimensions by Michaela Moura-Koçoglu

By Michaela Moura-Koçoglu

The Māori of latest Zealand, a state that quietly prides itself on its pioneering egalitarianism, have needed to assert their indigenous rights opposed to the demographic, institutional, and cultural dominance of Pākehā and different immigrant minorities - ecu, Asian, and Polynesian - in a postcolonial society characterised through neocolonial constructions of slightly stated inequality. whereas Māori writing reverberates with this fight, literary id discourse is going past any mistaken dualism of white/brown, colonizer/colonized, or modern/traditional. In a speedily changing context of globality, such essentialism fails to account for the varied expressions of Māori identities negotiated throughout a number of different types of tradition, ethnicity, classification, and gender. Narrating Indigenous Modernities recognizes the necessity to position Māori literature inside a broader framework that explores the advanced courting among indigenous tradition, globalization, and modernity. This examine introduces a transcultural method for the research of latest Māori fiction, the place articulations of indigeneity recognize cross-cultural mixing and the transgression of cultural limitations. therefore, Narrating Indigenous Modernities charts the proposition that Māori writing has got a clean, transcultural caliber, giving voice to either new and recuperated kinds of indigeneity, tribal group, and Māoritanga (Maoridom) that generate glossy indigeneities which defy any essentialist homogenization of cultural distinction. Māori literature turns into, whilst, either witness to globalized methods of radical modernity and medium for the negotiation and articulation of such structural ameliorations in Māoritanga.

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A transcultural approach is well suited to identifying the manifold currents that inform contemporary Māori culture: Any exploration of mixed race literature must incorporate the values and methods of reading texts/the world from all of the groups represented in those texts. Dual centrality of the Māori and Pākehā worlds is difficult to conceptualize, particularly when most theoretical debate comes from a Western academic framework that has often applauded the conceptualization of social and other realities in terms of binaries and polemics.

Chapter 5 establishes the emergence of a transcultural quality in recent Māori narratives, exploring the tactics Māori authors employ to negotiate indigeneity by interrogating how the transcultural processes as manifest in the novels contribute to the formation of distinct indigenous identities, and by unravelling the implications of global influences on the diverse articulations of specific Māori identities. Analysis indicates that literary interpretations of indigeneity foreground a blend of cultural traditions adapted to a transformed social context.

32 Witi Ihimaera, The Uncle’s Story (Honolulu: U P of Hawai‘i, 2000): 42. The Many Facets of Kiwi Identity 11 In this instance, the intersection between what is presented as ‘traditional’ and ‘modern’ cultural practices is made evident: the novel’s character of Arapeta, a World War Two veteran and a Māori leader of high birth, invokes the traditional concept of mana (prestige/authority /influence) that warriors allegedly gained through warfare in precolonial time. This notion is projected onto contemporary life, with Arapeta’s son and friends joining the White Man’s battle to acquire mana for their people.

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