The role of te reo knowledge and scholarship in the compilation of traditional and contemporary mōteatea
Nā Taiarahia Black
The role of te reo knowledge and scholarship in the compilation of traditional and contemporary mōteatea – narratives to support whānau, hapū and iwi engagement with their knowledge and scholarship, their whenua and the loss of whenua in natural hazard management.
In the last 100-160 years the diversity loss of te reo for Māori and Pākehā in Aotearoa New Zealand has affected intergenerational whānau, hapū and iwi reo experience, knowledge and scholarship. This has been caused by (1) historical removal from inherited land sources and depopulation, (2) deliberate suppression of languages and knowledge, (3) the occurrence of environmental hazards over the millennium.
In the last 3-4 decades Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori, Whare Kura, Kaupapa Māori, Mātauranga Māori, tertiary institution universities and Wānanga ā-iwi, Māori multi-media and broadcasting have had coverage right across the broad spectrum of Māori world views; in te reo, education, health, economics, land development, and sovereignty issues. This has allowed opportunities created by technology, sciences, and environmental hazard issues to emerge exponentially.
This new direction has allowed whānau, hapū and iwi in Tūhoe, Ngāti Awa, Te Whakatōhea, Te Whānau-a-Apanui, Rongowhakaata, Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki, Ngāi Tā Manuhiri to engage with the research through traditional songs and other rich narratives sources. These forms of engagement have re-established the loss of responsive te reo critical theories, through critical pedagogical research methodologies. As a product of this, the Resilience to Nature’s Challenges research platform has published eight te reo source tool kits, which support effective engagement with whānau, hapū and iwi.
These emerging critical te reo publications support whānau, hapū and iwi engagement in 3 key areas: (1) accumulation and sharing of traditional and contemporary knowledge, (2) the creation of new knowledge, (3) restoring and unlocking new knowledge sources.
This Resilience Challenge te reo – research platform, titled ‘Investigating the role of te reo knowledge and scholarship in the compilation of traditional and contemporary narratives to support whānau, hapū and iwi engagement with their knowledge whenua and the loss of whenua in natural hazard management’, is based on 4 research aims:
- the compilation, retelling and refreshing of essential narrative-heritage sources connected to the people and the natural environment,
- the recovery of rich te reo literary expression and philosophy
- recapturing reo historical ‘truths’
- compiling reo knowledge that is connected to occurrence of environmental hazards over the millennium to advance the expression of Māori philosophy and knowledge in science and environmental hazards.
The research aims above point the Resilience Challenge te reo – research platform to a new te reo direction. New knowledge narratives, supported by the Mātauranga Framework presented below, will be integrated with digital publishing to engage with Māori language teachers – marae, whānau, hapū, and iwi across Aotearoa. It will also create te reo resilience teaching resources to give continuity and build-cultural te reo diversity around environmental hazards.