Theme 10 'Māori inheritance'

Because of intermarriage there are few “real Māori” left; so they are no longer a distinct people and shouldn’t claim any benefits.
Māori blood, blood fractions (half-Māori, quarter-Māori, half-caste, part-Māori), intermarriage, pure, genes, drop of Māori blood, born-again Māori, plastic Māori, fingernail of Māori blood, waka-blonde, biculturalism  in the bedroom.
  • “Where could we be in 100 year’s time when, because of further intermarriage, an ever larger share of the population, say 30 percent, has a drop of Maori blood.” Paul Goldsmith column, New Zealand Herald, April 2009.
  • “Everyone who was born here is a New Zealander…four of my eight grandparents were Irish so by this silly racist Maori identity yardstick I am still half Irish.” Frank Haden, Dominion Sunday Times, September 20 1992.
  • A valid Māori identity is purely genetic or biological.
  • Racial purity is linked to cultural validity; mixed ancestry dilutes cultural identity.
  • Fifty percent Māori “blood” is a magical dividing line between authentic and fake.
  • Māori and European can be mutually exclusive categories.
  • Māori identity is claimed falsely by individuals wanting ‘special’ benefits.
  • Only Māori have to prove their identity; Pākehā do not face the same requirement.
  • Challenges Māori right to self identify as Māori.
  • Undermines legitimate claims by tangata whenua.
  • Validates assimilation of Māori as inevitable.
  • Māori are continually required to define who they are.
  • Pākehā often get defensive about identifying as a group.
  • Confuses race, ethnicity and culture.
  • Reduces the size of the Māori population and hence any claims on public resources.
  • Creates a fear that Māori identity fraud is rampant.
  • Reinforces certain cultural markers as valid indicators of Māori identity, and therefore excludes many people with Māori ancestry.
  • Only Pākehā identity can’t be faked.
  • Maintains the invisibility of Pākehā culture.
  • Self identification is valid.
  • Whakapapa expresses an integrated relationship between Māori ancestry, ethnicity, culture and identity.
  • Ethnicity, Culture, Race:  be clear about using the terms appropriately.
Download all 14 themes in a booklet (landscape A4 pages)