New Zealand Yearbook of New Zealand Jurisprudence
Last Updated: 19 April 2015
"HINE TO, HINE ORA"
Kirsten Aroha Gabel*
What place does karanga and other forms of taonga-a-waha have in contemporary mana wahine discourses?
Taonga-a-waha were an exceptional part of traditional Maori society. They reflected the complementary relationship between men and women, and empowered both genders in different but reciprocal ways. The taonga-a-waha of women, including karanga, kinaki and karakia were significant expressions of tribal tikanga and considered vital for the survival of the tribal group. Colonisers imposed their own Western values and interpretations of the oral arts on Maori society by placing emphasis on the largely male domain of whaikorero and essentially rendering the female taonga-a-waha (especially karanga) invisible. Contemporary constructs of the marae environment have dutifully followed these Pakeha ideals and this has resulted in the devaluing of female taonga-a-waha and the overvaluing of male taonga-a-waha by both men and women.
This paper is about Mana Wahine, and the importance of reclaiming our traditional and equitable voice on the marae. It will begin with an outline of the traditional forms of taonga-a-waha specific to Maori women, focussing on karanga. I will also discuss the evolvement of the kawa pertaining to these taonga with the arrival of tauiwi, including the current misuse and abuse of whaikorero. Lastly, I will outline a future direction for Mana Wahine, based on the reclamation of our voice on the marae and the re-establishment of the complementary relationship of our taonga-a-waha.
Kirsten Gabel.Iwi: Ngati Kahu, Te Paatu, Te Rarawa
Mahi: Maori Student Advisor - Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences University of Waikato
Research Interests: Maori Women and the Law, Nga Atua Wahine, Maori
Spirituality in schools (E hiahia ana au ki to whai he tohu paerata
e pa ana ki
tenei kaupapa rangahau)
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TE AO TAWHITO - NGA TAONGA-A-WAHA 0 TE MAORI
As a starting point for this essay it is necessary to lay the foundations of my arguments in the form of a detailed analysis of karanga and the intense and deep relationship the karanga has with both the traditional and contemporary spiritual realms. It is my experience that this knowledge is not widely talked about or discussed and that, like myself, many of our young women are growing up oblivious and ignorant of the actual spiritual and ceremonial depth that karanga has. I indeed once held the mistaken view that karanga was to be seen as somewhat of a curtain-raiser for the main whaikorero event and actually felt resentful when being asked to perform it.
One might argue that this knowledge should not be readily available to all but rather to a select few, and that karanga is an art learned only through observation of kuia. It is my contention however that unless this information is made more available to those who seek it, there will be continued to be widespread ignorance in this area — on the part of both men and women.
This is not intended to be an exhaustive description of karanga, rather an overview of some of the general points that I, as a young Ngati Kahu woman, have discovered in the course of my life journey so far.
Ko te Karanga —
Ko tatahi o nga tino take tiketike o te karanga, ko te turanga o te wahine i waenganui i nga ao e rua, ara, "[k]o te kaikaranga te takawaenga i waenganui i te ao wairua me te ao kikokiko (te hungamate me te hungaora)".I
He mea whakahirahira rawa atu te karanga ki te Maori. He mea hei whakamana i te tangata, hei whakanui i te iwi hoki. Ko te tino mahi o te karanga, ko te whakatakoto i te wairua o te hui, ko te whakamana i nga take o te hui hoki, hei whainga ma te iwi.
Ma te karanga e para te huarahi mo te hui, otird mo nga kaikorero.
Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout - Karanga (May, 2002).
When a kaikorero speaks ...they are nothing without the kaikaranga that brought people on to listen in the first place. In tradition mahi tangata and mahi wahine stood together they were he aha te kupu Pakeha? Complementary — the mahi is complementary2
Ko te karanga tetahi o nga reo o te wahine ki runga i te marae, ki roto hoki i nga momo huihuinga o te whenua. He reo mana, he reo ihi, otira he reo e whakamana ana i te ha o te wahine Maori.
Until women have opened their mouths the men, strictly speaking, cannot speak... many kaumatua would accept that the karanga and the poroporoaki are the whaikorero of women.3
Nga Atua Wahine e pa ana ki te karangal
Ko nga tikanga o te karanga, he tikanga no te ao tawhito, na nga Atua wahine i whakatakoto, a, na nga tupuna wahine i tuku iho mai ki a
Ko Papataanuku te kaikaranga tuatahi o te ao. Nana i whakatakoto nga tikanga o te karanga. Ka puta tam karanga tuatahi i te wa o tona wehenga atu i a Rangi - he karanga aroha, he karanga tangi, he karanga poroporoaki hoki5
Ko Hinerauwharangi tetahi atu atua wahine e pa ana ki te karanga. Ka taea e
te tangata te kite i a ia i roto i nga powhiri, ara, ko
nga pare kawakawa me nga
rau karanga he whakatinanatanga o tona hanga.
I roto i nga mahi ate kaikaranga hei takawaenga i waenganui i nga ao e rua, ka pa hoki ia ki a Hinenuitepo.
Ko Hineteiwaiwa te kaitiaki o te tinana o te wahine Maori, i roto i nga wa o te mate marama me te whakawhanau tamariki, a, nana hoki nga tikanga mo nga mahi katoa o te wahine Maori i whakatakoto.
3 Karetu, S "Kawa in Crisis" in King, M (ed) Te Ao Hurihuri (1975) 71.
5 Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout -
Karanga (May, 2002).
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Nga momo karanga:
He maha nga momo karanga o te Maori. Ka taea e te tangata wenei momo karanga te kite i roto i nga powhiri, nga tangi, nga poroporoaki, nga kaupapa waka, nga whakapotaetanga, nga whakataetae kapa haka, me wetahi atu wa e hui ana te iwi Maori. Otira, he rereke rawa atu te hanga o is hui, a, na tena, he rereke hoki nga reo karanga. Mena he hui harikoa ka harikoa ano te alma o te reo karanga. Mena he hui pouri, taimaha raini, ko tera ano te hanga o te reo karanga. Mutu atu, ko te reo karanga he reo ka taea te korero i te maha o nga momo hui o te Maori, me wetahi hui o te Pakeha. He rereke tenei ahuatanga ki telt' o te whaikorero. Ko te whaikorero he reo mo nga powhiri anake.
He aha nga tino tikanga o te karanga?
He tohu whakapOrea to te karanga, hei para i te huarahi mo nga whakahaerenga o te hui, hei horoi i te tangata, kia mahue ake ai nga paru, nga taimahatanga o te ao Pakeha i mua i tona urunga ki roto i te Ao Maori.°
He karanga ki te hungamate kia hoki mai ki te noho i waenganui i te ao kikokiko, ki te whakanui i nga take o te hui.7
The kuia is a peacemaker. She leads her people onto any marae, to any venue with dignity, courage, respect, and arohanui; she carries her people's canoe on her back spiritually. That load is heavy at times because the ancestors may choose to go along as well, especially if there is a tangi. In my old age I have felt their presence and have been glad to have them there.8
Ko te karanga he mihi hoki ki te marae, ki nga momo whare o te marae, me nga ahuatanga o te marae. He mihi hoki ki nga awa, ki nga maunga, ki wetahi atu ahuatanga o te taiao e to whakahirahira ana mo te hunga kainga (hei whakaatu hoki ki te hunga manuhiri)9
6 Gabel, R (Unpublished Manuscript).
7 Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout - Karanga (May, 2002).
8 Edwards, M, Mihipeka: Call of an elder — Karanga ate kuia (2002) 25.
9 Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout - Karanga (May, 2002).
Ka taea e te kaikaranga te korero mo nga take o te hui, ka taea hoki e ia te whakapuaki i wona ake whakaaro e pa ana ki waua take. Mena he tangi te hui, ka whakaatu ki nga tangata, ko wai te t5papaku e takoto ana, no hea hoki ia, mena he taiohi, he kaumatua raini.
He mahi whakahirahira anti to te kaikaranga ara, ko te whakaoho i te hunga kainga, hei whakamohio atu ki nga kaikorero, ki nga ringawera, me ngd tangata katoa ki roto i te wharenui kua tae mai he manuhiri. Ka whakaatu ants hoki ki a ratou ko wai te ope whakaeke.
Otira, ka whakamana, ka tuitui te kaikaranga i nga momo korero o nehera kia whakanikoniko, kia whakaoho i tons reo powhiri ki te tangata. I°
Ma wai e karanga?
He torite nga kawa o te karanga ki nga kawa o te whaiktirero, ara, i te
tuatahi, kei te hunga kaumatua (kuia) me te tuakana te mana
i te nuinga o nga wA. Atu i tena, ka taea e te whaea, e te taiohi, e te teina hoki te tu, mena rawa ke he kuia, he tuakana ki reira hei mahi i te karanga. Engari ant), ko te tino mahi ate teina me te rangatahi, he hiki
i nga huarahi awhina.I I
Me rite tonu hoki te turanga o nga kaikaranga o ia taha, ara, ma te kuia te kuia e karanga, (kia kaua te taiohi e karanga ki te kuia).
... it's an insult for a young person to call an older person on, it's the same with whaik5rero. The young talk to the young, and the young women karanga to the young reo-karanga. The time for the kuia to karanga is when everything is finished. Then she will cover them.12
E ai ki wetahi, ma te arero matatau noa e karanga, a, kei ia wahine te reo karanga mana, ma te kaikaranga e tito i tong ake karanga hei whakaatu i wona ake whakaaro.
10 Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout - Karanga (May, 2002).
12 Edwards, M, Mihipeka: Call of an elder— Karanga a
te kuia (2002) 26.
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Before I karanga I ask questions. Who are they? Whare do they come from? What is the topic of the day? Then I can phrase my words accordingly. You don't just use words because you've heard them or rehearsed them, you have to be a fluent Maori speaker to get up and do that sort of thing, because then it comes from the heart. You don't copy, you compose. 13
E tika ana kia rereke nga karanga kia is ope manuhiri, hei whakamana
i a ratou.14
Na te tino whakahirahira me te tino taimaha o nga mahi o te karanga, ehara i te pai kia karanga te wahine i wetahi
I te wa o te mate wahine me te tfiroro hoki, ara nga wa e pa ana te mate ki runga i te tinana.
Mena e hapil ana te wahine (ehara i te pai kia
marakerake te pepi ki te ao wairua).
Mena he whanau pani, he taimaha rawa raini te hinengaro o te wahine (Lahore te wahine e tino ahei ana ki te whakapilare i tona hinengaro ki te ao wairua.)
Ko te Krnaki? (He aha te tikanga o tenei kupu `kinaki'?)
Ko te kinaki he waiata tautoko a muri atu i te whaikorero o te tane. E ai ki te korero ko te kupu kinaki he kupu e whakaatu ana i te hanga o tenei waiata, ara, he waiata hei whakaniko i te whaikorero o te Vane, hei whakaoti i wana korero hoki.
Ki ahau nei, he mana anti to tenei waiata, ehara i te kinaki noa iho mo te korero o te tane.
Ma tenei waiata e whakamana i te wahine Maori —
ki te whakamutu i nga korero o te tane (mena he koretake, he huke, e kotiti haere ana raini).
14 Gabel, R (Unpublished Manuscript)
15 Yates-Smith, A Te Ao Wahine Lecture Notes/Handout - Karanga (May, 2002).
Kua hanga ngaro waua ahuatanga ki runga i nga marae i wenei ra. He rite ano te kuia whakakati korero ki te `kotuku rerenga tahi', ara, he ruarua noa iho ngd wa e kite ana tatou i wenei tfunomo mahi. He rereke hoki te hanga o nga waiata ki te maha o nga hui ki nga marae o te motu. Ka taea e te tangata te rongo i nga waiata Ora i te `Ehara',i te `Maku ra pea', i te waiata 'E toru nga mea', aha atu, a, ehara i te waiata kinaki, he waiata noa iho kb".
Horekau ahau e hiahia ana kia roa atu waku korero mo te taonga nei
i te mea, ko te tino kiko o tenei tuhinga, ko te ata titiro ki nga hononga ki waenga i te mana o te karanga me te mana o te wahine. Engari ano kua whakatakotoria e ahau woku whakaaro mo tenei take, ahakoa ano, he poto.
TE TAENGA MAI 0 TE PAKEHA
Consequences for Maori Women — Maori adoption (Pakeha imposition) of Pakeha tikanga in relation to oral 'arts' and overall position of Maori women.
For a long time Pakeha looked at what was going on the marae and made judgements...they assumed that what men did was important and what women did wasn't. An outside culture looked at Maori women, as first speakers through karanga, and started redefining who was doing what.I6
In essence, the tauiwi people who arrived in early New Zealand gave little recognition to the karanga and its role in maintaining the strict balance necessary for the prosperity of the iwi. A colonised perception of oral arts on the marae resulted and has been sustained ever since.
At the heart of the matter is the assertion that men whaikorero, that women don't and that this is an example of sexism, the denial of women's rights. Here the principle of equal rights is being argued in the context where male behaviour is used as the norm against which female behaviour is judged. Women weren't doing exactly what men did, therefore what they were doing, didn't count, in its own right..17
16 Irwin, K in Brown, A (ed) Mana Wahine: Women who show the Way
17 Ibid, 10
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One needs only look at various writings in this area to see evidence of the mistaken perceptions tauiwi held. The writings of Ann Salmond, for example reflect a typical tauiwi perception of whaikorero, Salmond states;
The orator is an esteemed figure in the Maori world. A skilled orator is a master of genealogy, ancient chants, local history and proverbs... [T]he east coast custom [of women speaking] is occasionally used to infuriate guests, as visitors from other areas consider it an insult to be welcomed by a woman.18
Salmond also comments on the meaning of the whakapohane in Maori society; "[This whakapohane] expressed the opinion that the speaker was noa, like a woman and should no longer speak on the marae"19 and makes comments about the status of women on the marae -
When a women speaks on the marae today she should ideally follow the male orator, and justify herself by referring to her illustrious predecessors. In other areas women speak only in the meeting-house at night, and then only if she has something important to say.',20
Salmond makes a number of assumptions that demonstrate the colonised perception that she holds: That women are noa (and men, by implication, are tapu), that only women who have `illustrious predecessors' with something important to say can speak (as opposed to men, any of whom can speak and apparently about anything) and that such speaking should be done at night and only after a male has seemingly cleared the way for her. She also makes the assumption that success in the Pakeha world equates to reverence on the marae.21 Most unbelievable however is her statement that to be welcomed by a woman is an insult: what, therefore, does she perceive the karanga to be?
18 Salmond, A Hui: A study of Maori ceremonial gatherings (1985)
20 Ibid, 152.
This is merely an indication of some of the fallacies that exist in both older and contemporary historical accounts of Maori society. There are many more examples of patriarchal assumptions and general downplaying or invisibilising of female taonga-a-waha readily available in Pakeha and Maori written literature; authors of which include Buck22 and Best23 . In a contemporary form however, 'acclaimed' Maori author, Alan Duff also displays a disturbing perception of our taonga-a-waha in line with the writings of the Pakeha historians.
The old way has women considered of lower status than men. In most tribes they have no speaking rights on the marae. And to die-hard traditionalists, they should be seen... and not heard... Maori women claim to be satisfied with their lot in life... that they anyway have "our ways of influencing" even if it is by a an indirect route. They have, I contend, been brainwashed by the very male power structure that...continues to deny them. You'll hear the argument...that ...women in fact play a vital role in Maori society, or why else should it be a women's voice heard first as welcome...? This is not a valid argument; it is nothing but a foi1.24
Writing like this perpetuates the idea that the speaking kawa on the marae is inherently wrong, and traditionally so. It continues to reinforce the degradation of karanga and female taonga-a-waha in general, and goes as far as to be critical of women who accept this 'subordinate' role on the marae.
It does, however, highlight an important issue for Maori women on the marae, that is, what counts as speaking? Kathie Irwin has sought to discuss this issue. She comments:
Protagonists in this debate have recognized only whaikorero as speaking. The other forms of oral art, some in which women only speak, have not perhaps been regarded as real speech making... 25
22 Buck, P The Coming of the Maori (1949) 361.
23 Best, E The Maori as He Was (1924) 100.
24 Duff, A Maori — The Crisis and the Challenge (1993) 89.
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So what does count as 'speaking'? Certainly, a close analysis of karanga will tell you that it includes a huge amount of self-expression on behalf on the kaikaranga. Further to this, however, it is essential that we have a full understanding of just what speaking is done on the marae and under what circumstances. It is therefore necessary to draw attention to the distinction between whaikorero and what is simply lairero on the marae. It is my understanding that whaikorero is the oratory performed during the formal process of the powhiri whereas korero refers to other oratory on the marae. For that reason I would state that women do not generally perform whaikorero for the simple reason that they instead perform karanga.
I would also like to clarify my personal understanding of marae speaking kawa in relation to women. This understanding is not to be considered an absolute authority but merely a reflection of some of the observations I have made and knowledge I have attained during the course of my life so far, inclusive of my upbringing in Ngati Hine for eighteen years:
Women are allowed to speak within the wharenui as it is the domain of Rongo-ma-Tane and Hineteiwaiwa. Women are not permitted to speak on the marae atea, as it is the domain of Tumatauenga. In some areas, (Tai Tokerau included) women are not allowed to speak (whaikorero) during the formal process of powhiri whether that takes place in either domain. In other areas, such as Ngati Porou, women are permitted to whaikorero in both domains under certain conditions. For the most part, however, the kawa of not allowing women to whaikorero is directly related to the role of women as whare tangata, and is necessary to protect them from the physical and metaphysical dangers that whaikorero (and the marae atea) may present in the course of a specific ceremonial occasion. It is also recognition of the unique role that women played as the intermediary between Te Ao Kikokiko and Te Ao Wairua (a role particular to the feminine alone).
The prohibition on women is not because of blatant chauvinism but because my kaumatua believe in the sanctity of woman... [s]o while some people might accuse Maori society of being chauvinistic, it should be borne in mind that the role of women is very important in ritualistic and practical terms."'
26 Karetu, S "Kawa in Crisis" in King, M (ed) Te Ao Hurihuri (1975) 72.
It has been argued that the adherence to such tikanga is just ritualistic and not really that relevant to `te ao nei e titini haere ana', and that in order for te iwi Maori to move forward in this world there must be change and evolvement of our tikanga along with the evolvement of ourselves as Maori. So why do we hold on to these seemingly antiquated kawa?
There are many who advocate that strict observance of kawa is really of little use because attitudes are continually changing and, therefore kawa, if it is to be of any relevance, must also adapt... What in fact is the point of retaining kawa? Initially, and, fundamentally , it makes behaviour simple and clear cut...Many tribes are now settling for convenience rather than what is...correct...It makes all observance of kawa meaningless and useless."
Therefore it is important to maintain these tikanga if only to provide a constant in the ever-changing environment we live in. In olden times interaction with other tribal groups in New Zealand was restricted by many environmental factors, but the fact that present day allows this interaction quite easily, is good reason for kawa to be retained stringently - for the simple reason of allowing it to be observed effectively by other visiting parties to a marae. Imperative to Maori women in this argument however, is that all knowledge of these tikanga and kawa be retained and utilised effectively. "If we accept that there is some virtue in the retention of kawa then women must be taught to perform their own role well".28
There is also a voice which supports the evolvement of our speaking kawa in order to provide Maori women with the authority that is so often vested in Pakeha men;
When a Pakeha man, who is tauiwi, not a speaker of the language, or tangata whenua in a Maori sense of the word, is allowed to stand and whaikarero on the marae atea simply because he is a man, then Maori women surely have cause for concern... if the kawa of these tikanga is to change to fit a contemporary context, is there not logic to the position that the changes should include Maori women before Pakeha men if they are to be accepted as cultural changes and not patriarchal bonding?29
27 Ibid, 69.
28 Ibid, 72.
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This is indeed a valid and concerning point. Engari ano, kei a wai te mana o te whaikorero? I te mutunga o te ra kei te tane - he mahi to te tane, he mahi arid to te wahine. Perhaps the real underlying issue is not that women should have whaikorero rights over Pakeha men but that Pakeha men should not have whaikorero rights at all! However, is it not up to our men to decide whether or not they devalue their own taonga-a-waha by allowing it to be desecrated by an English tongue?
In some regards Maori women can count themselves as lucky that our taonga have essentially evaded intrusion by Pakeha, perhaps because they (Pakeha) undervalue its contribution to society but, and more likely in my opinion, because it requires he reo manutioriori, a skill and taonga our women are more likely to possess than our Pakeha counterparts!
The major point in this argument however, as Ani Mikaere3° and Kathie Irwin3I assert, is that careful consideration should be given to any adaptations of tikanga that occur in the Maori arena, simply because such adaptations can and have had a devastating impact on the fine complementary balance that once existed between Maori women and men.
I will now discuss some of these such impacts and the effect that a warped perception of our taonga-a-waha has had on Maori women and their specific roles in society, both in Te Ao Maori and Te Ao Pakeha.
TE AO HURIHURI
The reality for Maori women in New Zealand is that they have to survive in two worlds: the Maori world and in the Pakeha world. Each world has its own separate reality. Each has its own values, mores and beliefs and each demand conformity and allegiance. In her daily experiences a Maori women is constantly in transition from one reality to the other.32
There can be no one definition or perception of what constitutes a Maori Woman in this new millenium. Recent writing reflecting this, centering around the intersectionality theory, has been authored by Paul Meredith33 , among others. However, in general, a Maori woman is (in Pakeha statistical terms) a woman of Maori descent and (in Maori terms) one who recognises and celebrates herself as Maori.
Many issues then arise for the Maori woman living in New Zealand. The statistics (albeit the Pakeha ones) tell the story:
For Maori women [the] oppression is threefold. They are oppressed in terms of gender class and race. All three are interwoven into a complex mantel of oppression that cloaks every aspect of their lives. Their statistics in terms of `success' in the areas of education, health and work are devastating.34
For each individual Maori woman, the experience of marae kawa, tikanga and karanga differs immensely.
Te turanga o te wahine Maori ki runga i te marae —
Rereke ke tend ao, kare i rite te mauri, na te mea kua kaha te whakauru mai o te ao Pakeha ki roto i nga whakahaere. Ana kua memeha haere te mauri; kua kore i tarekate kawe [nga tikanga]. Ko au tetahi o nga wahine haere ki nga hui katoa, ana, kai te kite au i te hikoi o tenei wa.35
One of the most concerning problems is the level of internalisation among our women of the colonised views of our roles on the marae. Many Maori women are inclined to just accept a subordinate role given to them (and justified as kawa) and just as many men are under the impression that their role on the marae is much more important than the feminine one.
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A huge part of the problem is the extent to which we ourselves have internalised colonised perceptions of male and female roles. How many of us have the sense that our contribution is somewhat valued less than that of our male relatives? Just as important, how many of our men have bought into the idea that the privileging of men over women is part of our tradition? How many of them have yet confronted the possibility that colonisation has made them collaborators with the colonisers against their own women?36
The colonised perceptions that are referred to above include our speaking roles, namely, karanga and whaikorero. There is a growing insistency within Maori institutions that male-only speaking roles on the marae are not exclusively restricted to whaikorero, and that in general women do not have a speaking voice on the marae outside of karanga and waiata. This is coupled with the belief that these feminine speaking roles are less important and valuable.
Many marae around the country are persisting with this sophism and effectively silencing Maori women on the marae, excluding them from important decision-making forums and rendering them quiescent. More concerning is the passive acceptance of this by many women, fortified by a general reluctance to step outside the established 'comfort zone' as kaitautoko to the men.
The marae rituals, rather than being the means to an end, risk becoming the end itself. At many hui, Maori are in danger of becoming automatons... Any deviation from the standard is likely to draw accusations of breaching tikanga, of not being truly Maori.37
An issue within this that has been identified by a number of Maori writers is the perception of the marae as the last "bastion of Maoridom"38 , an arena within Maori society that has resisted the colonisation process. For this reason there is an almost desperate retention of what is perceived to be kawa. Interference in this institution is severely resented.
38 Ibid, 126.
This issue has challenged the marae, a central institution in Maori life and culture, and ideas about the role and status of women. Targeting the marae as it has, this controversy has hit at the very heart of Maoridom and caused great pain. As a result , over the years, the subject has become virtually untouchable.39
Therefore the issue of Mana Wahine becomes secondary to that of Mana Maori, despite the ultimate intertwining and co-dependent nature of both realms.
Another issue that becomes even more debilitating to women than the perception of karanga as a subsidiary voice on the marae, is the somewhat perfunctory manner in which the karanga is being performed on many marae around the country. "In many places karanga are brief and very generalized, simply covering the bare minimum to satisfy the standard requirements"." This is also indicative of a passive acceptance of an inferior vocal role on the marae and the general internal perception that the realm of karanga is not an avenue for the kaikaranga to express her own thoughts.
Timoti Karetu also discusses a more contemporary issue facing young Maori seeking to establish a place on the marae.
The tragedy of the situation is the way in which the younger Maori person is suddenly becoming increasingly aware of his ignorance of what he should do in a given marae situation and, more importantly, why he should be doing something.
With ignorance comes confusion and error and this is likely to affect Maori women in a more detrimental manner than Maori men. A desperate retention of so-called kawa, coupled with an ignorance of the spiritual and traditional rationale for such kawa, leaves Maori women in a very vulnerable position on the marae.
41 Karetu, S "Kawa in
Crisis" in King, M (ed) Te Ao Hurihuri (1975) 68.
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TE TURANGA 0 TE WAHINE KI ROTO I TE AO MAORI
How has/does the constructed vocal imbalance impact on Maori women within Maori institutions?
The persistent sophistry regarding speaking roles on the marae is also continuing to have a detrimental effect on Maori women within Maori institutions outside of the marae also. The internalised perception that Maori men have a defined special role within society to represent the vocal interests of their people, has resulted in the marginalisation of Maori women within Maori institutions.
Maori women are 'on the outside looking in'. There is no system guaranteeing a place for Maori women within our own institutions... [a]ny talk of structural change sends some of our men into a tail-spin...42
This can be illustrated to the extreme within many of our RiThanga-a-Iwi, where we see the importation of marae kawa' into the boardroom. As if it is not enough that many of these institutions use Pakeha concepts of meeting and board structure, it is as though there is a further need to import patriarchal quasi-kawa in order to legitimise the institution as Maori. Instances have arisen where 'speaking kawa' has been taken from the marae and imposed on these boards, and in some cases this has been a deliberate ploy to silence the voice of female members of the board. A classic example of this, outlined by Linda Te Aho, is the relocation of a board meeting to a marae in order to place restriction on the speaking input of a female member.43
The origins of present day Trust Board structures can also be traced to Crown Legislation" . Annette Sykes questions the structure of the Te Arawa Trust Board and states that "since its inception [it] has traditionally asserted that the kawa o Te Arawa denies the right of Maori Women to participate fully"45 . She rejects this notion and
42 Evans, R "Maori Women as Agents of Change" in Te Pua (1994) 35.
44 For example, the Maori Trust Boards Act
45 Sykes, A "Constitutional Reform and Mana Wahine" Te Pua (1994;3:1) 17.
reiterates that rather than this being a traditional kawa of Te Arawa, it is instead a reflection of the "consequence of the patriarchal methods of decision-making which permeate Pakeha power structures...3546
The legislation she speaks of was passed in 1955, a period of New Zealand history where many monocultural policies and laws47 were created which unfortunately still apply to this day.
Ngahuia Te Awekotuku also discusses the problem of qualification in Maori institutions:
...if you sit back with a PHD or Masters and wait to be invited... all the boys with BAs will score the jobs, or muscle in...It becomes a very cruel and ironic situation, because you know you should be pleased for them...48
This characteristic is one common to Pakeha society where it is well known that the average female employee requires better qualifications than her male counterparts to gain recognition in senior positions. In Maori terms, however, it seems as though no matter how specialized the role is, qualification comes second to `kawa'.
...the perception exists that Maori women are discriminated against on the basis of illogical reliance upon tikanga and kawa... Maori organisations may consider Maori women unable to lead or be placed in certain management positions because, as women, they will not be able to whaikorero. The inability to whaikorero becomes more important than other qualifications, skills and talents that may be more critical to the job.49
When you consider the fact that Maori women are significantly more likely to attain a tertiary qualification than Maori men50 , the injustice of the situation becomes highly obvious.
46 Ibid, 17.
47 Adoption Act 1955, Guardianship Act 1968
49 Ibid, 200.
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TE TURANGA 0 TE WAHINE MAORI KI ROTO I TE AO PAKEHA —
How does the constructed vocal imbalance impact on Maori women within Pakeha institutions?
The perception of women having a limited or non-existent voice on the marae has been the cause of much distress for Maori women within Pakeha society. The importation of these post-colonial and patriarchal `kawa' into the Pakeha world and the reinforcing of those erroneous beliefs regarding Maori society has resulted in the marginalisation of Maori women, intensifying a continued invisibility in New Zealand public administration sectors.
The first example to be given of the lack of understanding shown by the Crown for the position of Maori women is the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, whereby Maori women were not allowed to sign as authorities for their respective tribes. "The concept of women as...spokespersons for their iwi would have been beyond the comprehension of the...Crown representatives...51 . Calamitously, this view of Maori women has persisted ever since.
Maori women are essentially left out of decision—making in many facets of Pakeha society. The major area of concern in this regard is the fact that despite being particularly affected by poor socio-economic lifestyles, Maori women remain largely underrepresented in the consultative policy and legislative bodies.
... just as significant as the debate on the effectiveness or otherwise of the legislative provisions incorporating the Treaty, is the fact that Maori women as an identifiable group with particularly pressing needs have remained virtually invisible to the law.52
Of course this invisibility is not only due to the fallacies present regarding female and male speaking roles in Maori society, but could also be attributed to an intrinsically sourced system of patriarchy present in
Pakeha society. What can be said in regard to speaking roles, however, is the fact that these are often used as justifications for such underrepresentation, that is, that Maori women would not be an effective voice on a consultative body because they simply lack the capacity to speak in various important situations, and thus pragmatically serve the interests of their people.
There remains the perception that Maori men are the speakers and thus the representatives of Maori society. A claim with the Waitangi Tribunal to deal with this issue brought the retaliative comment from the Crown that it was Maori men who were perpetuating the subordinate role of Maori women, and that the Crown was therefore powerless to change that.53 The Crown essentially fails to recognise any leadership roles Maori women may take, and on the odd occasion that this is recognised it is also downplayed as being an exception to the rule.
Maori men are also making significant contribution to sustaining this representative vocal imbalance, having become "accustomed to acting as spokespersons on behalf of all Maori..."54 , and feeling no doubts about their ability to represent Maori in negotiations with the Crown. Therefore, the effect of the Crown's erroneous perception is twofold: it not only acts to place Maori women in an inferior position in society, but also seeks to endorse and encourage the promotion of Maori men as spokepersons and leaders for Maori, while introducing Maori men to the traditional Pakeha 'boys club' mentality.
TE HAERE WHAKAMUA
Ko tehea ng5 huarahi marika mo to Mana Wahine?
Maori women are exploding the colonial myths that have been constructed, whilst simultaneously redefining boundaries... we are constantly confronted with the need to decolonise that which we have internalised about ourselves.55
53 Ibid, 147.
54 Ibid, 151
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Mena e hiahia ana tatou te iwi Maori ki te anga whakamua, ko te tino mea whakahirahira, ko te whakamana ake i te turanga o te wahine Maori. ma te hunga Maori anake tenei mahi, kia kaua ake tatou e taka ki nga kaupapa Pakeha, waihotia atu ratou ki te whakatutuki i wa ratou ano raruraru. Engari, rawa ke me he mahi ma nga wahine Maori anake. Ina kore te tane Maori e whakakaha, e tautoko i te mana o te wahine, kore onga, ka raru te iwi Maori katoa. Ahakoa ano tens, kei a tatou te wahine anti" to tatou tu, a, kei te tane ano to ratou.
The future for Mana Wahine lies in our past. That is, in order to move forward we must as a collective and as individuals reclaim and celebrate what is essentially ours. It is imperative that we take our roles on the marae seriously and give them the adequate authority and prestige they deserve. This means correcting the fallacies that exist but above all celebrating the truths that persevere. Our taonga-a-waha can provide a starting point and platform for Mana Wahine.
Ko te reo te Mauri o te mana Maori
Needless to say what is most relevant to the whole concept of kawa is the Maori language. The marae is the last situation where one is expected to speak in the vernacular and, once it is no longer so, our language along with our kawa will be no more.56
The retention of our reo has long been recognised as an essential factor in our survival as a people. So too does it have huge relevance for the survival of our taonga-a-waha. Just as we as wahine resent the arero kilare that stand and whaikorero on our marae, so too must we seek to purify and give authority to the reo karanga on our marae.
"Me aro ki te ha o Hineahuone"
For Maori women 'redrawing the maps' necessitates a deconstruction of the existing landscape. This is essential in that it allows for the reclaiming of Maori women's knowledge forms, of Maori women's stories, which will aid us in the reconstitution of our own world views57
56 Karetu, S "Kawa in Crisis" in King, M (ed) Te Ao Hurihuri (1975) 75.
Kei o tatou tupuna wahine te huarahi whai mana ma tatou. We must look to our tupuna wahine and our atua wahine and draw strength from their unique roles. Not enough is heard about our tupuna wahine and the roles that they played in the shaping of our people. They were an important and crucial part our traditional society. Let us draw strength from our atua wahine especially, who continue to permeate our lives in various natural and spiritual manifestations.
The goddesses names collectively form the feminine principle, Hine, the ultimate source of creativity born of the primal parents. Together with the male gods and all of our tupuna they guide us into the future. It is therefore with the renewed vigour of the ancients that we Maori move forward, intent on retaining that which is uniquely Maori in a modern world."
From our tupuna wahine we can also draw on the evidence of our equitable voice and role on the marae. They were not only known for their capacity to korero on the marae in various forms, but for their effectiveness in that capacity to provide our people with leadership and direction. Let us celebrate and venerate this aspect of our history, and remember that they continue to be a part of our everyday lives.
It must also be reiterated, however, that if we are to truly pay homage to our own distinct tupuna wahine then it is imperative that we do this at home - i raro iho i nga wairua me nga manaakitanga o te hau kainga.
"Me hoki ki te fikaip6"
We earth our mana wahine to Papatfianuku the earth mother and her mauri. From this whakapapa Maori women established their identity as being the land itself....59
Me whakanui ake tatou i to tatou ukaipo, i a Papatfianuku, me te whare tangata.
59 Sykes, A "Constitutional Reform and Mana Wahine" Te Pua
100 Yearbook of New Zealand Jurisprudence Special Issue - Te Purenga Vol 8.2
We must celebrate ourselves as whare tangata, and as akaipo and draw strength from Papatuanuku, our tupuna and whaea who gave us a strong voice on the marae. This is not an action for Maori women alone - the restoration and celebration of our complementary roles can only be actioned by a collective whole.
Mena ka taea e tatau te tangata nga tikanga toiora i tauiratia mai e Ranginui raua ko Papatilanuku me a ratou tamariki, i whakaataatahia ki a tatau, akene ka noho roa tatou ki tenei ao. Mena ka kawea tatau te tangata ko te taha tangata anahe, is ka mahue i a tatau te taha wairua ka tihoretia nga mana tiaki i te hinengaro, i te mahara, i te wairua ka mate ko te tinana.6°
It is therefore essential that a holistic approach is undertaken, one that gives authority to all facets of our existence. All elements of Mana Wahine and, as such, Mana Maori, are distinctly intertwined with our whaea, Papatuanuku, and rightly so. She has continued to provide us with both spiritual and physical sustenance from the beginning and provides also an eternal touchstone and focal point for Maori women.
A lot of our young ones talk about the reclaiming of nga mea Maori and that's what we need to do reclaim nga whakaaro o nga tupuna. Because we are all joined together by the whakapapa our mana is all joined together ...and each tamaiti, kotiro every wahine has her own mana that makes her special but joins her too to everything else...6'
Otira, kei a tatou te iwi Maori katoa, te tino mana whakanui i nga tikanga nei. Essential in the advancement of Mana Wahine is the collective Maori unit. While the reclaiming of our female taonga-a-waha can only be effected by Maori women, the ultimate goal is of course the reestablishment of the complementary relationship of the taonga-a-waha of both genders. Therefore it is up to both men and women to reaffirm our traditional and tuturu kawa on the marae.
This essay has sought to reinforce the traditional and equitable taonga-a-waha of Maori women on the marae while dispelling the imported patriarchal values imposed on our people since the arrival of tauiwi. An in-depth analysis of the tikanga and kawa in relation to karanga is evidence enough of the esteem and power of the reo of Maori women on the marae. It is not enough to merely reclaim the knowledge of this taonga, we must also reclaim its physical presence on the marae. It is my view that until this taonga is given the reverence it is due, our vocal position within the marae cannot change. It is imperative that we firstly concentrate on the reclamation of our own taonga-a-waha before finding cause to question the taonga-a-waha fallacies perpetuated by our tane. It is by no means a simplistic task, but one that rather requires a sustained and collective assertion by Maori women of their vocal capacities on the marae.
Heoi nano, kia kaua ake tatou e wareware, ko te mana wahine Maori he mana no
te ao tawhito, no te ao wairua. He kopu mana e ora tonu
ana ki te hinengaro o te
wahine Maori. Me whakanui talon i tenei mana hei arahi i a tatou, hei whakakaha
hoki i a tatou kia to tika
ai tatou ki roto i tenei ao hurihuri. Me whai hoki
tatou i nga akoranga o wo tatou tupuna wahine, nga akoranga hoki o wo tatou atua
wahine, nä ratou ani5 nga tikanga o wo tatou taonga-a-waha i whakatakoto.
Kia kaua ake tatou e wareware i roto i wo tatou hikoi
huarahi katoa ki tenei ao,
a, ko nga atua wahine i reird e manaaki, e tiaki ana i a tatou. Mai i to tatou
whaea a Papatfanuku ko
riro i a tatou te reo karanga. Me whakanui ake i tenei
taonga, hei whakakori i o tatou hinengaro, kia to kaha ai tatou ki te ao nei,
otira kia tatuki ai te korero - "Hine
102 Yearbook of New Zealand Jurisprudence Special Issue - Te Purenga Vol 8.2
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