Malcolm Maclean and the Haka

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Manage episode 309465872 series 3010003
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This episode Malcolm MacLean of University of Queensland/DMU/University of Gibraltar gives a paper on rugby in Aoteoroa/New Zealand and the multiple meanings of the Haka. Recent historiographic trends that admit the voices, both schol-arly and archival, of Empire’s Others alongside emerging post- and de-colonial praxis are prompting a significant rethinking of the dynamics of colonial sport. Even so, there remains a failure to recognise the historical agency of Indigenous peoples in set-tler colonialism, linked to the extinguishment of Indigenous dis-tinctiveness, ways of knowing and ways of being in settler colo-nial states. One of sport’s key roles in Indigenous persistence in settlement colonies is when it becomes a site of the sustenance of Indige-neity. A pre-match haka is widely recognised as a marker of New Zealand rugby, notably by the men’s national representative team. The high profile of the contemporary All Black haka over-shadows its fraught, ambivalent presence through much of the 20th century. That profile and methodological blindness result-ing from visons of sport grounded in a colonial matrix of power obscure a more banal Maori engagement with haka in rugby. This paper explores haka and sport as a site of Maori kin group maintenance as contested and complex sites and practices that are explored through evidence derived from literary and visual sources.

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