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Once Were Pacific
Author: Alice Te Punga Somerville

ISBN: 9780816677573
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 1 June 2012
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 21.6 x 14.0 x 2.0
Description:


Native identity is usually associated with a particular place. But what if that place is the ocean? Once Were Pacific explores this question as it considers how Maori and other Pacific peoples frame their connection to the ocean, to New Zealand, and to each other through various creative works. Maori scholar Alice Te Punga Somerville shows how and when Maori and other Pacific peoples articulate their ancestral history as migratory seafarers, drawing their identity not only from land but also from water.

Although Maori are ethnically Polynesian, and Aotearoa New Zealand is clearly a part of the Pacific region, in New Zealand the terms “Maori” and “Pacific” are colloquially applied to two distinct communities: Maori are Indigenous, and “Pacific” refers to migrant communities from elsewhere in the region. Asking how this distinction might blur historical and contemporary connections, Te Punga Somerville interrogates the relationship between indigeneity, migration, and diaspora, focusing on texts: poetry, fiction, theater, film, and music, viewed alongside historical instances of performanc...

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