Today’s 149th book to be celebrated as part of Te Takarangi, is a collection of essays that explores the value of the Māori language. Te Hua o te Reo Māori asks all of us to imagine an Aotearoa where we are all bilingual, speaking Māori as well as English, accessing two bodies of knowledge in a true partnership as envisaged by the Treaty of Waitangi.
Higgins, R., P. Rewi and V. Olsen-Reeder (Eds). The Value of the Māori Language: Te Hua o te Reo Māori. Wellington: Huia Publishers, 2015.
Even though the Māori language obtained official language status in 1987, Māori are still expending energy to revitalise and normalise the language within Aotearoa New Zealand. The challenge for Māori is to win the hearts and minds of mainstream New Zealanders, now and in the future to understand the enormous value of the language to the nation across the board – in education and media, in tourism and the broader economy, and to culture and society. To achieve this, the value of Māori language must be understood, appreciated and adopted at all levels of society – from the corridors of the classroom, to the corridors of Parliament
This book aims to facilitate the discussion, raise awareness and heighten the consciousness of society regarding the Māori language and potential or actual opportunities this brings for the country through its wholesale adoption by wider society. The book is the second in a Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga edited collection published by Huia publishers and edited by Associate Professor Rāwinia Higgins (Tūhoe), Associate Professor Poia Rewi (Tūhoe, Ngāti Manawa, Te Arawa), and Vincent Olsen-Reeder (Ngā Pōtiki a Tamapahore, Ngāti Pukenga, Ngāi Te Rangi, Te Arawa). It draws on research from a scholarly community to contribute to the value of the Māori language over a 25-year period and their aspirations for the future direction of the language.
The 30 contributors are from a cross section of society – including leaders of the flax roots Kohanga Reo movement, Māori media entities, to policy people and politicians. The book aims to engage and reawaken Māori consciousness regarding the value of Māori language as an integral part of Māori and New Zealand’s development
This publication is part of the series Te Takarangi: Celebrating Māori publications - a sample list of 150 non-fiction books produced by a partnership between Royal Society Te Apārangi and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga.