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Hybrid cultural identities and Cook Islands tertiary students in a cross-cultural contact zone: A case study approach

Abstract
This thesis focuses on how cultural identities of Cook Islands students are renegotiated in ‘the Conch’, a dedicated Pacific student space at the University of Waikato. Of particular interest is the significance of the Conch for identity formation and cultural maintenance for Cook Islands students. Additionally, processes that facilitate or hinder intercultural relations at the Conch is investigated. This research adopts an ecological approach to research in addition to Pacific methodologies to explore the complexity of hybridized identities, experiences of intercultural encounters, and how a sense of belonging is established in the Aotearoa Cook Islander student community. This case study showcases the complexities of identity construction, the nature of group membership, and the fluidity of culture. The key themes of cultural continuity, power dynamics, and perception of minoritisation are further discussed. Essentially, enacting cultural identity remains a fluid and dynamic process.
Type
Thesis
Type of thesis
Series
Citation
Date
2022
Publisher
The University of Waikato
Rights
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