The place for mātauranga Māori

is alongside science

Since colonisation, mātauranga Māori has been pushed aside by Western notions of science. Ngā Pae o te Māramataga research lead Dr Ocean Mercier explains how the two can coexist, and why it’s crucial for Aotearoa that they do.

Around 800 years ago, Polynesian voyagers used their rich knowledge of stars, weather, currents, plants and wildlife to navigate across the expanses of Te-Moana-Nui-A-Kiwa to Aotearoa. As they established a society of iwi and hapū groupings across the islands of their new home, Māori developed an intimate place-based system of knowledge or mātauranga. 

But, as has been repeated the world over, colonisation in Aotearoa meant that our indigenous knowledge, mātauranga Māori, was undermined and diminished – jettisoned in place of British ways of doing things. Māori were dislocated from our whenua and our language actively repressed in schools and institutions. In the process, our rich bodies of knowledge were left fractured.

Link to article: The place for mātauranga Māori is alongside science | The Spinoff


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