World’s indigenous people gather in New Zealand

Tevita Ka'ili of Brigham Young University in Hawaii.

Tevita Ka’ili of Brigham Young University in Hawaii. Photo: Christine Rovoi

Indigenous histories, cultures and struggles will be the focus of academics and artists meeting in New Zealand this week.

More than a thousand people from the Pacific and across the globe are in Hamilton for the Native American Indigenous Study Association (NAISA) conference at the University of Waikato.

Tongan-born academic Tevita Ka’ili said the event would bring Pacific Islanders together with First Nations people from around the world.

The professor of culture and anthropology at Hawai’i’s Brigham Young University said he would present a paper on trans-indigeneity.

“Trans-indigeneity is the idea that as indigenous people are moving outside of their homeland, they are in contact with other indigenous people,” Professor Ka’ili said.

“And so it’s sort of the collaborative work that they’re doing, the sort of co-operation that’s happening with multiple indigenous.”

Topics of other papers being presented include indigenous leadership and self determination, while roundtables and panels will discuss subjects such as indigenous perspectives on climate justice and urban indigeneity.

Films and the services of Tā moko artists and healers will also be available at the four day conference which starts today.