Pihama, L., & Cameron, N. (2012). Kua Tupu Te Pā Harakeke: Developing Healthy Whānau Relationships. In For Indigenous Minds Only - A decolonization handbook (pp. 225–244). Santa Fe, New Mexico: SAR Press.
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/13268
We have opened this chapter with our ‘pēpeha’. Pēpeha are ways through which our people introduce ourselves. These vary from tribe to tribe. The essence of pēpeha is that they link us to our tribes and all associated with that. Our mountains, our rivers, our canoes, our ancestral lines. It links us to each other. It places us, as Māori, within a wider collective consciousness and relationships. It is important to highlight that the term ‘Māori’ is a term that brings us as tribal peoples together. It is a term that our people have chosen to use as a means of unifying ourselves in the wake of the arrival of our colonizers. Prior to colonization all identification was done through our whānau (extended family structure), hapū (subtribes) or iwi (tribes). The term Māori means to be ‘normal’ or ‘pure’, as such it is a fitting term for an Indigenous People. We have, however, also been active in maintaining our hapū and iwi identities and it is through pēpeha that we can culturally share that identity with each other. Our people have been doing this for generations. And in spite of colonization seeking to undermine our cultural identity, many of us continue to do this.
Reprinted by permission from For Indigenous Minds Only: A Decolonization Handbook, edited by Waziyatawin and Michael Yellow Bird. Copyright 2012 by the School for Advanced Research, Santa Fe, New Mexico. All rights reserved.