#StayAtHome Film Festival: Louise’s Māori and Pasifika Picks

Our Kanopy and Beamafilm streaming platforms have a great selection of FREE content from Aotearoa and the Pacific. It’s always good to see our own cultures represented on the screen, so while we are still spending a lot of time at home grab the opportunity to watch some gems that have a Māori and Pasifika kaupapa!

This blog only highlights a small selection of films including emotional movies, documentaries, and a feel good gem about musicians and finding yourself. You will find more if you search ‘Māori’, ‘New Zealand’, or a specific Pasifika country within Kanopy or Beamafilm.

Go ahead and immerse yourself in the stories of Aotearoa and the Pacific!

The Orator

Year: 2011
Length: 106 minutes
Director: Tusi Tamasese

Watch the full film here on Beamafilm!

The Orator is a beautiful and emotional movie that was written and directed by Samoan film-maker Tusi Tamasese and shot entirely in Samoan on location in Samoa itself. Saili’s story is one of love and challenges as he learns he must stand tall, despite his small stature, to become a hero. Highly recommended.

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You can also watch Tamasese’s other feature film, One Thousand Ropes, on Kanopy.

Kuo Hina E Hiapo: The Mulberry is White and Ready for Harvest

Year: 2001
Length: 28 minutes
Directors: Joseph Ostraff, Melinda Ostraff

Watch the full film here on Kanopy!

Tapa cloth is a true artistic treasure of the Pacific. In Tonga it is called ngatu and this short documentary illustrates  ngatu’s symbolic importance and collaborative production. Beautiful and fascinating!

Discover More:

Our Te Moana-Nui-A-Kiwi/Pasefika popular topic page provides links to all sorts of Pasefika books and online resources.


Year: 1988
Length: 100 minutes
Director: Merata Mita

Watch the full film here on Kanopy!

Merata Mita was the first Māori woman to write and direct a dramatic movie when she brought out Mauri in 1988. Set on the East Coast, Mauri stars Anzac Wallace (Utu) and activist Eva Rickard. This is a landmark film from a landmark Māori film maker.

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You can also watch Ngati on Kanopy, another ground-breaking  film from a Māori film maker, this time Barry Barclay.


Year: 2017
Length: 86 minutes
Directors: Ainsley Gardiner, Awanui Simich-Pene, Briar Grace Smith, Casey Kaa, Chelsea Winstanley, Katie Wolfe, Paula Whetu Jones, Renae Maihi

Watch the full film here on Kanopy!

Eight female Māori directors give us eight connected stories, each taking place at the same moment in time during the tangi of a small boy called Waru. This is a very moving and challenging film with all eight stories  subtly linked while following different female characters. All must come to terms with Waru’s death and try to find a way forward within their community.

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A tangi is at the heart of Waru. If you want to learn about Māori protocols surrounding tangi, or other Māori topics, our Māori Information Resources page is an excellent place to start.

The Rain of the Children

Year: 2008
Length: 102 minutes
Director: Vincent Ward

Watch the full film here on Kanopy!

I love this film. Vincent Ward’s beautiful dramatic documentary explores the life of Tuhoe woman Puhi and her relationship to Rua Kenana and the community at Maungapohatu. Ward looks at the curse Puhi believed she lived under in an incredibly moving way, and the result is a jewel of a film.

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You can also watch Vincent Ward’s first film about Puhi, In Spring One Plants Alone, on Kanopy.

The Deadlands

Year: 2013
Length: 107 minutes
Director: Toa Fraser

Watch the full film here on Beamafilm!

Woo hoo! Revenge and action abound in Toa Fraser’s movie starring James Rolleston and Lawrence Makoare. You gotta love the use of mau rākau – a traditional Māori martial art – and a script in te reo Māori!

Discover More:

If you want to start learning te reo Māori our recent Resources to Learn Māori blog can help with all sorts of tips to get you started.

The Pa Boys

Year: 2014
Length: 90 minutes
Director: Himiona Grace

Watch the full film here on Kanopy!

My whānau love this heartfelt film about a musician and his reggae band on a road trip of music and self discovery. Francis Kora is wonderful as Danny who is unsettled, and then opened up to his culture, when Tau (Matariki Whatarau) joins the band. Music, landscape, laughs and love – beautiful and simple.

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The band in The Pa Boys sets out from Wellington where Danny lives. If you love the music scene in Wellington you can learn more about it on our dedicated Wellington Music page.

People of the Pacific: Recent Pasifika books

Miss Ulysses from Pukapuka

This collection of recent books has a little bit of everything for the keen reader; a diary, a sports star, a witch doctor and more. From Captain Cook’s voyages across the Pacific Ocean, to the 1970s dawn raids in New Zealand, this booklist is not one to miss if you’re wanting to brush up on a little bit of Pasifika history.

Syndetics book coverMiss Ulysses from Puka-Puka : the autobiography of a South Sea trader’s daughter / by Florence (Johnny) Frisbie ; edited and translated by her father, Robert Dean Frisbie.
Miss Ulysses from Puka-Puka (2nd ed) by Florence (Johnny) Frisbie is the first book written by a Polynesian woman. It tells the amazing story of a young girl growing up on a remote island in the Cook Islands group. Written when Johnny was between the ages of 12 and 14, and published in 1948 when she was 15, Johnny likens her travels through South Pacific islands to those of Ulysses in the Odyssey. Her grandmother’s extended family, the trading station operated by her father, the local witch doctor, a native missionary, her father’s mistress after the death of her mother, and her first boyfriend are among the characters she describes with unflinching honesty. Out of print for more than sixty years, Johnny has added two new chapters to this classic and compelling book and illustrated it with family photos and three maps.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Pacific : in the wake of Captain Cook with Sam Neill / Meaghan Wilson-Anastasios.
“Captain James Cook first set sail to the Pacific in 1768 – 250 years ago. These vast waters, one third of the earth’s surface, were uncharted – but not unknown. A rich diversity of people and cultures navigated, traded, lived and fought here for thousands of years. Before Cook, the Pacific was disconnected from the power and ideas of Europe, Asia and America. In the wake of Cook, everything changed. Voyaging on a wide variety on vessels, from container ships to fishing trawlers and sailing boats, Sam crosses the length and breadth of the largest ocean in the world to experience for himself a contemporary journey in Cook’s footsteps, engaging the past and present in both modern and ancient cultural practice and peoples. Fascinating, engaging, fresh and vital – this is history – but not as you know it.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDawn Raid / Pauline (Vaeluaga) Smith.
“Like many 13-year-old girls, Sofias main worries are how to get some groovy go-go boots, and how not to die of embarrassment giving a speech at school! But when her older brother Lenny starts talking about marches and protests and overstayers, and how Pacific Islanders are being bullied by the police for their passports and papers, a shadow is cast over Sofias sunny teenage days. Through her heartfelt diary entries, we witness the terror of being dawn-raided and gain an insight into the courageous and tireless work of the Polynesian Panthers in the 1970s as they encourage immigrant families across New Zealand to stand up for their rights.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTatau : a history of Sāmoan tattooing / Sean Mallon and Sébastien Galliot.
“The Sāmoan Islands are virtually unique in that tattooing has been continuously practised with indigenous techniques: the design of the full male tattoo, the pe’a, has evolved in subtle ways since the nineteenth century, but remains as elaborate, meaningful and powerful as it ever was. This richly illustrated cultural history is the first publication to examine 3000 years of Sāmoan tatau. Through a chronology vivid with people, encounters and events, it describes how Sāmoan tattooing has been shaped by local and external forces over many centuries. It argues that Sāmoan tatau has a long history of relevance both within and beyond Sāmoa, and a more complicated history than is currently presented in the literature.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMy life, my fight / Steven Adams, with Madeleine Chapman.
“For the first time, Steven Adams shares the story behind his meteoric rise from the streets of Rotorua to his emerging stardom in the NBA.
Adams overcame the odds to become a top prospect in the 2013 NBA draft. From there he went on to secure a four-year contract with the Oklahoma City Thunder – making him New Zealand’s highest-paid sportsperson ever – and forge a reputation for his intense, physical style of basketball. In this intimate account of his life story so far, the seven-foot centre reflects on his humble upbringing, the impact of his father’s death when he was just 13, the multiple challenges and setbacks he has faced, early career-defining moments, and what basketball means to him.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPathway of the birds : the voyaging achievements of Maori and their Polynesian ancestors / Andrew Crowe.
“This book tells of one of the most expansive and rapid phases of human migration in prehistory, a period during which Polynesians reached and settled nearly every archipelago scattered across some 28 million square kilometres of the Pacific Ocean, an area now known as East Polynesia. Through an engaging narrative and over 400 maps, diagrams, photographs, and illustrations, Crowe conveys some of the skills, innovation, resourcefulness, and courage of the people that drove this extraordinary feat of maritime expansion. In this masterful work, Andrew Crowe integrates a diversity of research and viewpoints in a format that is both accessible to the lay reader and required reading for any serious scholar of this fascinating region.” (Syndetics summary)

Pasefika eBooks you can borrow anytime

Need a good read? Including Albert Wendt and Selina Tusitala Marsh, here are just a few eBook titles to whet your appetite. Sign up to Overdrive and get started borrowing…

Overdrive cover Nuanua, Albert Wendt (eBook)
“Edited by Albert Wendt and copublished the University of Hawaii Press, Nuanua is an anthology of short stories, extracts from novels, and poems written since 1980 in the Pacific Islands. It remains an essential resource for teachers of Pacific literature.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Whetu Moana, Robert Sullivan (eBook)
“Whetu Moana is the first anthology of contemporary Polynesian poetry in English edited by Polynesians. It collects poems written over the last twenty years from more than 60 poets in Aotearoa, Hawaii, Tonga, Samoa, the Cook Islands, Niue and Rotuma. Well-known poets like Hone Tuwhare, Alistair Campbell and Haunani-Kay Trask are joined by talented young voices, the poets appearing in alphabetical order in a way that presents both an overall Polynesian identity and a focus on individual style. Traditional laments mix with street-smart rap rhythms; images of seascapes and landscapes mingle with shots of urban slums. Political anger is a powerful force in these poems but many are personal and particular. Whetu Moana reveals an active, changing, varied, creative scene, which confronts both a complex colonial past and a fast-moving global present with energy, courage and vitality.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Dream Fish Floating, Karlo Mila (eBook)
“Professor Konai Helu Thaman (Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor, and UNESCO Chair in teacher education & culture – The University of the South Pacific) says this about the collection: This is a refreshing and welcome addition to the growing list of women’s writing in Oceania. Karlo draws wisdom and compassion from her ancestral cultures but is not constrained by them. Honest and unafraid, she has spread her net wide in order to capture the many concerns that many people are grappling with as they face the realities of a globalised and impersonal world. Written with passion, persistence and sensitivity, her poems are insightful, challenging and sometimes provocative. This book should inspire others, especially women, to share their experiences with the rest of the world.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Adventures of Vela, Albert Wendt (eBook)
“Journey through the many stories and worlds of the immortal Vela – Vela, so red and ugly at birth they called him the Cooked; Vela the lonely admirer of pigs and the connoisseur of feet; Vela the lover of song maker Mulialofa the Boneman. Follow him down through the centuries on his travels, encountering the single-minded society of the Tagata-Nei and the Smellocracy of Olfact. Accompany him, too, as he recounts the stories of Lady Nafanua, the fearsome warrior queen, before whose powers travelling chroniclers still bow down today.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Ancestry, Albert Wendt (eBook)
“Albert Wendt’s new collection of short stories explores the nature of family, tradition and culture through the eyes of those seemingly caught between the realities of modern contemporary life and the ancestral ties of their heritage. With a deft touch, he draws us into his characters’ lives and with equal parts wisdom and wit, he exposes them to us. This is a masterful meditation on the ties that bind people together across time and place.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Fast Talking PI, Selina Tusitala Marsh (eBook)
“Fast Talking PI is the first ‘singular, confident and musical’ collection of poetry by Auckland writer Selina Tusitala Marsh. ‘Tusitala’ means writer of tales in Samoan, and Marsh here lives up to her name with stories of her life, her family, community, ancestry, and history. Her poetry is sensuous and strong, using lush imagery, clear rhythms and repetitions to power it forward. The list poem is a favourite style, but she also writes with a Pacific lyricism entirely her own. Fast Talking PI is structured in three sections, ‘Tusitala (personal), ‘Talkback’ (political and historical) and ‘Fast Talking PI’ (already a classic). In poems like ‘Guys Like Gauguin’ she writes as a ‘calabash breaker’, fighting back against historic injustices; but in other poems she explores the idea of the calabash as the honoured vessel for identity and story. Ultimately, though, Marsh exhorts herself to ‘be nobody’s darling’, as a writer she is a self-proclaimed ‘darling in the margins’, and Fast Talking PI proves it – a generous work that will thrill readers; ‘a map in our arms / to get us over the reef’; and a tremendous first book.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover Whispers and Vanities, Tamasailau M. Suaalii-Sauni (eBook)
“This collection of essays and selected poetry responds to an address on Samoan religious culture given by Samoa’s Head of State, His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta’isi Tupuola Tufuga Efi, to the 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions. The address challenges some fundamental aspects of and assumptions in modern Samoan indigenous religious culture. The essays and poetry form a carefully woven critique, from within and outside Samoa, of aspects of Samoa’s religious and cultural values.” (Overdrive description)

Overdrive cover The Auckland University Press Anthology of New Zealand Literature, Jane Stafford (eBook)
“‘What, after all, is the truth of a place that has only just been worked into language?’ From Polynesian Mythology to the Yates’ Garden Guide, from Allen Curnow to Alice Tawhai, from Jessie Mackay to Alison Wong, from Julius Vogel to Albert Wendt, from the letters of Wiremu Te Rangikaheke to the notebooks of Katherine Mansfield – Maori, Pakeha, Pasifika, and Asian New Zealanders have struggled for two and a half centuries to work the English language into some sort of truth about this place. The Auckland University Press Anthology of New Zealand Literature brings together for the first time in one volume this country’s major writing, from the earliest records of exploration and encounter to the globalised, multicultural present. Editors Jane Stafford and Mark Williams range across novels and stories, poems and plays, letters and diaries, comics and songs to collect the defining stuff of our literary heritage. The contents will delight and provoke: Erewhon and The Heart of the Bush; Man Alone and ‘No Ordinary Sun’; The God Boy and Hicksville; ‘The Gumboot Song’ and The Vintner’s Luck. Through an imaginative selection and illuminating introductions, Stafford and Williams provide new paths into our writing and our country. For students and readers, at home and overseas, the Anthology of New Zealand Literature will be the indispensable introduction for years to come to what’s worth reading and why.” (Overdrive description)

Pasefika Arts and Crafts

Talofa lava, Kia orana, Malo e lelei, Here are some useful titles of Pacific Art books. These books are available to be borrowed and we also hold a copy of most of them in the New Zealand Collection or Māori Collection on the second floor of Central Library. In addition to books, there is a very useful website Tautai: Guiding Pacific arts whose aim “is to provide Pacific artists with the necessary tools to help them develop their art practices and thrive as individuals in their communities.” This site has useful resources such as links to groups, institutions or organisations dedicated to funding, professional development, awards and competitions. Other useful websites are the Victoria University Pacifc studies pages Pacific Studies, and the University of Canterbury Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies.

Syndetics book coverFatu Feu’u on life & art / [by Fatu Feu’u interviewed by Shona Jennings ; photography by Evotia Tamua].
“Fatu Feu’u is an internationally recognised Samoan-New Zealand artist who has been . at the forefront of the contemporary Pacific art movement in NZ over the past 20 years. He has also been forging a worldwide interest in this genre, and has been nurturing a generation of Pacific artists. This is his story from wilful Samoan-village boy to the global art world. His thoughts on art and life are woven into an inspiring tale that helps us understand what drives him, and what’s behind his art.” (based on the cover jacket)

Syndetics book coverPacific art in detail / Jenny Newell.
“Introduces the riches of Oceanic art through astonishing close-up views of rarely seen treasures from behind the scenes at the Oceanic collection at the British Museum. The pieces chosen for the book use a wide range of materials and techniques and illustrate major themes such as creation, land and sea, connections to gods and ancestors, or spiritual power. The author discusses ‘What is Pacific art?’ while short annotations place each individual art work in its cultural context.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverPasefika : the Festival of Pacific Arts / Floyd K. Takeuchi.
“Every four years the Pacific Islands best dancers and performers gather and the result is The Festival of Pacific Arts. This is a celebration showcasing two weeks of the finest dancers, singers, carvers and other cultural masters from across the Pacific. This book tells the story of the 10th Festival that was held in American Samoa, with more than 2,000 artists and performers traveled to Tutuila Island for the occasion together with thousands of local and international visitors. Well illlustrated.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverArt in Oceania : a new history / Peter Brunt, Nicholas Thomas, Sean Mallon, Lissant Bolton, Deidre Brown, Damian Skinner and Susanne Küchler ; edited by Peter Brunt and Nicholas Thomas, assisted by Stella Ramage.
“The arts of Oceania are astonishing: great statues, daunting tattoos, dynamic carving, dazzling woven and painted fabrics, intricately carved weapons, and a bewildering variety of ornaments, ritual objects, and utilitarian but beautiful things. This landmark book breaks new ground by setting the art of Oceania in its full historical context and capturing an up-to-date understanding of the field. From archaeological findings of prehistoric art to the impact of pre-colonial, colonial and post-colonial historical processes, it explores influences such as migration, trade, missionaries, pacification, tourism, nationalism and contemporary market factors, offering abundant new interpretations and addressing significant gaps in other publications. … This beautifully illustrated volume will appeal to general readers interested in world art, collectors, university students, scholars and museum professionals in the field.” (publisher’s description)

Syndetics book cover Home AKL : artists of Pacific heritage in Auckland, by Ron Brownson … [et. al].
“Home AKL was a dynamic exhibition at the Auckland Art Gallery, presenting works by Pacific artists, most of whom live in Auckland. It reveals the increasingly significant role Pacific art plays in New Zealand’s identity and cultural landscape, and includes work by more than 20 artists whose heritage derives from the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tonga and Tuvalu. Artworks include those by prominent Pacific artists – Lonnie Hutchinson, Ioane Ioane, Shigeyuki Kihara, Andy Leleisi’uao, Paul Tangata and Teuane Tibbo – and emerging talents such as Leilani Kake, Janet Lilo and Siliga David Setoga. Artist biographies are detailed.” (adapted from the publisher’s description).

Syndetics book coverTreasured possessions : indigenous interventions into cultural and intellectual property / Haidy Geismar. “Based around Vanuatu and New Zealand, the author examines the different paths each have used to assert intellectual and cultural property rights. The historical and legal contexts are first explored. Cultural intellectual property is a hot topic in asserting indigenous sovereignty, and cultural survival.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverArts of the Pacific Islands / Anne D’Alleva.
“In this comprehensive survey of the art of the Pacific Islands, including the Melanesian, Polynesian, Micronesian, and New Guinean traditions, author Anne DAlleva explains the significance of these artworks by contextualizing them within each islands unique culture and practices. In the process, DAlleva examines the biases of both artists and Western viewers, telling an important history of both people and ideas through a detailed analysis of sculpture, paintings, textiles, dance, jewelry, and architecture. As these nations faced alternating periods of isolation, colonization, and contact with each other and the West, their forms of art were drastically altered to incorporate foreign influences and to develop autonomous identities and cultural independence.” (publisher’s description)

Pacific Language Weeks 2014

The 2014 Pacific Language Week line-up begins with Samoa language week in May and ends with Tokelau language week in early November.

Samoan Language Week

This years theme for Samoan Language week (25th – 31st May) is “Taofi mau i au measina”, “Hold fast to your treasures”.

Pacific language weeks provide a chance for Pacific language and culture to be promoted and maintained through song, dance, cultural displays, language debates, speech competitions, constitution celebrations and more.

This years Pacific Language Week programme is as follows;

Samoa Language Week: 25-31 May
Cook Islands Language Week: 4-10 August
Tonga Language Week: 1-7September
Tuvalu Language Week: 29 September-5 October
Fiji Language Week: 6-12 October
Niue Language Week: 13-19 October
Tokelau Language Week: 26 October-1 November

In support of this upcoming week of celebration of Samoan language and culture here are some of the resources available at Wellingon City Libraries.

Syndetics book coverGagana Sāmoa : a Samoan language coursebook / Galumalemana Afeleti Hunkin.
“Gagana Samoa is a modern Samoan language resource. Designed for both classroom and personal use, it features:a methodical approach suitable for all ages an emphasis on patterns of speech and communication through practice and examples10 practical dialogues covering everyday social situations an introduction to the wider culture of faasamoa through photographs more than 950 exercises to reinforce comprehensiona glossary of all Samoan words used in the coursebook oral skills supplemented by an optional CD. Galumalemana Afeleti Hunkin was born in Faleula, Western Samoa, in 1945. He became the foundation tutor of Samoan language and culture at the Pacific Islanders’ Educational Resource Centre, Auckland, in 1977. Four years later he was appointed director of the Wellington Multicultural Educational Resource Centre. He is now a senior lecturer in Samoan studies at Victoria University”. (Book jacket)

Syndetics book coverSāmoan word book / Aumua Mataitusi Simanu and Luafata Simanu-Klutz ; illustrated by Regina Meredith Malala.
“Features beautifully illustrated vocabulary words, a pronunciation guide, and a glossary. Word categories include family, home, school, the body, opposites, numbers, nature, and time. Illustrations by Regina Meredith Malala bring terms to life. A cassette tape recorded by a native speaker is available.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Samoan picture dictionary / [illustrations by Dale Tutill]. “The Samoan Picture Dictionary is an excellent resource for people beginning to speak or write Samoan. It contains over 1000 commonly used words, and words needing further explanation are given in English and Samoan sentences to aid comprehension. Wordlists include parts of the body, telling the time, colours, numbers, days of the week and months of the year.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHow do you say ‘thank you’? / Karamia Müller ; illustrations by Mark Paterson.
“Alofa and Filipo want to learn gagana Sāmoa so at bedtime they ask their parents how to say various things in the Samoan language”. Suggested level: junior.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverO le talo Sione / tusia e Lino Nelisi ; ‘o ata na tusia e Elspeth Williamson ; fa’a li liuina e A’oga Fa’a-Samoa.
“The story of Sione and his crops and the preparation of a feast, translated into Samoan. This children’s story has full page colour illustrations showing a happy group of people enjoying the generosity of their land.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSamoa / text by Sarona Aiono-Iosefa ; photographs by Noel Bartley.
“Introduces the history, geography, weather, flora and fauna, food, social structure, political history, religion, and the unique ceremonies of American Samoa and independent Samoa.” Suggested level: intermediate, junior secondary. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMea’ai Samoa : recipes and stories from the heart of Polynesia / Robert Oliver with Dr Tracy Berno and Shiri Ram.
“The cuisine, traditions and environment of Samoa presented in recipes, photographs and stories.” (Publisher information)

Syndetics book coverSamoan art and artists = O measina a Samoa / Sean Mallon.
“For almost 3,000 years, Samoans have selectively rejected, adapted, or appropriated influences within and outside their island group. Often not only the objects themselves are important but how they are used, so in order to understand the importance of each piece in Samoan society, Mallon provides ample cultural information. Contemporary artists describe their own work. The well-informed text is lavishly illustrated with early photographs, color photographs, and explicit diagrams.” (Abridged from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverʻO solo o sulatoga : ʻo le faʻatāuaina o measina a Sāmoa / Leʻautuliʻilagi Taotua Malaetā Faʻasapisapi Sauvao.
“O lenei tusi o Sulatoga ua vaevaeina i ituaiga fa’aaloaloga e sula ai le toga pa’ia a Samoa e pei o fa’aaloaloga i: ‘Ekalesia ma Fa’afeagaiga o Ifoga o Fa’aipoipoga Fa’aulufalega o Mafutaga ma Fa’alapotopotoga Maliu o Momoliga o se Faife’au o So’o se fa’aaloaloga o Solo e sula ai inati o sulatoga. ‘Ua iai le fa’anaunauga ‘o le a aoga tele lenei tusi mo i latou e fia fa’atinoina le sulatoga. E fa’apena foi ona aoga lenei tusi i faia’oga ‘o le Gagana Samoa, e fa’atino ai galuega tau gagana mo vasega. E aoga foi i so’o se tagata ‘olo’o fia maua atili le malamalama’aga i lenei foi tu ma aganu’u a Samoa.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTatau : Samoan tattoo, New Zealand art, global culture / photographs by Mark Adams ; [written by] Sean Mallon, Peter Brunt and Nicholas Thomas.
“Samoan tattoing, or tatau is an ancient Polynesian art tradition and rite of passage that reaches its most powerful expression in the full body male tattoo, the pe’a. Building on the internationally touring exhibition Tatau, this extraordinary series of images by leading photographer Mark Adams documents the story of tatau in the Pacific and its remarkable globalisation.” (Syndetics summary)

Pacific Advisory Group

Pacific Forum Poster The Pacific Advisory Group is a link between the Council and Wellington’s Pacific communities. It is designed to have representatives from Wellington’s seven main Pacific nation groups – Cook Islands, Fiji, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tuvalu and Tonga.
The next Pacific Forum to discuss the Draft Annual Plan 2014/15, is on 24 February 2014, 5.00pm – 7.30pm at St Giles Presbyterian Church, 42 Kilbirnie Crescent.

King George Tupou V

King George Tupou V of the South Pacific nation of Tonga has died at the age of 63. Tonga is the last Polynesian monarchy, although the king was instrumental in bringing about democratic reform. He had been king since 2006. The following are featured books from some of our collection on Tonga and its history, focussing on the Tongan monarchy and the democratic changes that occured during the reign of King George Tupou V.

Syndetics book coverTonga’s way to democracy / Ian C. Campbell.
“In 2010 after more than a century of oligarchial government Tonga made the bold step to full parliamentary democracy, catching up with the rest of ther island Pacific. This book tells the story of that reform, of the long protest movement that preceded i and how the royal family abruptly espoused democracy.” – (Adapted from back cover)

Syndetics book coverIsland kingdom : Tonga ancient and modern / I.C. Campbell.
“Uniquely among the nations of the Pacific Islands, Tonga was never subject to direct European rule at any point in its history. Since the original settlement of the islands, Tongans have been masters of their archipelago, developing a distinctive and elegant culture. Amid rapid modernisation the ancient kingdom has survived.” – (Adapted from back cover)

Syndetics book coverQueen Salote of Tonga : the story of an era, 1900-1965 / Elizabeth Wood-Ellem.
“A biography of the queen. Her life is seen in the context of political, social and economic developments in Tonga. There is a detailed study of kinship and principles of hierarchy. 125 photographs are included. A glossary of Tongan words and phrases and an alphabetical list of people are provided. The work is based on the author’s doctoral thesis.” – (Syndetics summary)

The new friendly islanders : the Tonga of King Taufa’ahau Tupou IV / Kenneth Bain ; foreword by His Majesty King Taufa-Ahau Tupou IV!.
“A rounded and vivid picture emerges of an ancient South Seas island society of great character and special quality – yet under pressure for change, beset by factional debate and, some also fear, on the brink of popular unrest. So, while the people look critically at themselves and their institutions, Kenneth Bain asks what the future holds for Tongans as they approach the millennium.” – (Adapted from back cover)

New Pasefika music

Here are a few highlights:

99AD 99AD.
“There’s a lot to say about 99 A.D, the new album from New Zealand’s much loved hip-hop/R&B crew Nesian Mystik. The record is as welcoming as it is challenging, it’s uncompromisingly forward thinking rather than mired to the many successes of the group’s celebrated past and, in the words of rapper Feleti ‘Sabre’ Strickson-Pua, it is “completely fresh.” (Adapted from Amplifier.co.nz)

“Erakah’s appropriately titled debut album Infatuated. It’s a record that showcases not only her dazzling vocal ability but also her willingness to push the sonic boundaries and perceptions of what R&B can be and do.” (Amplifier.co.nz)

RiseandshineRise & shine.
“The Release of Rise And Shine marks the beginning of a new chapter for Adeaze, and the boys are excited to be back doing what they love best – making great music and putting on great shows. Adeaze have delivered a beautifully constructed album replete with songs of love, lost and found, and ultimately of hope. The last few months have seen Adeaze busy with the daily production and recording sessions for Rise And Shine. The first single Got My Girl For Life was delivered to radio in October 2010, and in February 2011 Adeaze followed that up with Broken Promises. The third single Paradise saw Adeaze bring together friends, family and local artists to sing with them. Adeaze wrote this song to encourage people, wherever they are at in their lives, to find their own paradise.” (Amplifier.co.nz)