Kia tū ko taikākā: Let the heartwood of Māori identity stand - An investigation into the appropriateness of the legal definition of ‘Māori’ for Māori
Coates, Natalie (2008) Kia tū ko taikākā: Let the heartwood of Māori identity stand - An investigation into the appropriateness of the legal definition of ‘Māori’ for Māori. Other thesis, University of Otago.
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Māori are not a homogenous people. In contemporary society Māori come in all different sizes, shapes, colours, social conditions, cultural affiliations, religions and opinions. Given this diversity there are thus some complex and often controversial issues involved in determining who should be able to qualify as being Māori. Despite this complexity the law sets out who can qualify as being ‘Māori’ in one clear and concise sentence. Currently, this definition in general encompasses anyone with Māori descent. The main thesis of this dissertation is to determine whether this legal definition of Māori is appropriate for Māori. Ultimately, it is concluded that there is a more appropriate definition of ‘Māori’ that could be employed within the law. However, Māori need to take a more active role in controlling this definition.
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