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How Maori have been affected through the notion and practice of schooling: A theoretical analysis

Education has always been associated according to the public with a necessary function to equip individuals to fit into society when they reach adulthood. The fact that it functions with efficiency is attributed in part to the implementation of social norms, which "impose uniformity of behaviour" (Young 2006, p. 1). This thesis delves into how Maori have been positioned under a mainstream schooling discourse which has put them at a disadvantage since the implementation of a discourse requires the subjugation of those who are not the majority power holders to assimilate into someone else's discourse. The effect of assimilation into a mainstream discourse has political implications for Maori, as schools are the gateway towards social stratification. This thesis will look at the historical and developmental concept of schooling within a western context, moving towards the development of formal schooling in New Zealand and also look at the sociological and political impact of schooling upon Maori students. I will also differentiate between the terms schooling and education to suggest Maori forms of educational discourse has been marginalised in favour of assimilation into a supposedly equitable rigid, formal system of schooling. I will illustrate the broader concept of education that takes place outside of schools formal boundaries as a way to contrast the level of control and regulation the government initiates within the formal schooling environment. I will also look at the way schools have been used from its colonial beginnings in New Zealand as a way to civilise or impose one cultural practice on another as a way of breaking down uncivilised beliefs and traditions.
Type of thesis
Williamson, L. T. (2012). How Maori have been affected through the notion and practice of schooling: A theoretical analysis (Thesis, Master of Arts (MA)). University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/7946
University of Waikato
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