Ngā reo o ngā niupepa: Māori language newspapers 1855-1863
By 1855, most Māori still lived in a tribal setting, with little official Pākehā interference. This would have been as they expected, exercising their tino rangatiratanga, the chiefly rights guaranteed by the Treaty of Waitangi. However, their world was changing. In an effort to gain Pākehā goods, many Māori had entered the market economy. Most had converted to Christianity. Many could read and write. Some sold land to accommodate the increasing number of Pākehā settlers. These trends gratified the government. It envisaged a New Zealand society dominated by Pākehā, in which European mores would be norm, and where its sovereignty, gained through the Treaty, would be more substantive rather than nominal. At this tme, the government pursued the policy of iwi kotahi (one people) or "amalgamation". The policy included the aim of elevating Māori socially and economically by extending to them the benefits of European civilisation. It sought too to encourage Māori to give up their "waste" lands for Pākehā settlement, and for Māori to accept the rule of English law, and government authority. Ultimately the two races would become one society - a Pākehā-style society. The government used newspapers for disseminating its message to Māori, publishing the bi-lingual Maori Messenger - Te Karere Maori from January 1855 to Spetember 1863. This thesis investigates the government's newspaper, plus other Māori language newspapers appearing within the period, printed by government agents, evangelical Pākehā, the Wesleyan Church, and the rival Māori government, the Kīngitanga. The thesis not only looks at the impact of newspapers upon Māori society and political issues to Māori, including the first Taranaki War, the Kohimarama Conference, and the impending all-out war with the Kīngitanga in Waikato. Using the newspapers as its major source, this thesis seeks to show how Māori might have understood the issues, and where possible, to allow them to respond in their own voices. We are fortunate that for almost a year the Kīngitanga was able to publish its own views in Te Hokioi, thus allowing the anti-government Māori voice to articulate its stand. However, Māori opinion was hardly unitary. The Pākehā-run Māori language newspapers, through reports, reported speeches, and their corrsepondence columns, provide another set of Māori opinions, which show a variety of opinions on political and social issues. Many histories of this period focus on the tensions and conflicts between Crown and Māori, thus marginalising pro-government Māori, the waverers, and those who merely wanted to keep trouble from their door. This thesis endeavours to illuminate the whole colonial discourse as it appeared in the Māori language newspaper, providing a wide range of opinions as possible.
Degree Name: Doctor of Philosophy
Degree Discipline: Te Tumu, School of Maori, Pacific & Indigenous Studies
Keywords: Maori social history; Maori religious history; Maori political history; Maori legal history; Maori commerce history; 19th century Maori society; Maori newspapers; colonial discourse; race theory; Maori language; translation; propaganda; mana and tino rangatiratanga; New Zealand Wars; Kohimarama Conference; Gov. Thomas Gore Browne; Gov. Sir George Grey; Maori King Movement
Research Type: Thesis
Other language versions: http://hdl.handle.net/10523/5145 (Māori)
This thesis is also available in te reo Māori (the Māori language).