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Thread: Kiwi Culture

  1. #1
    selchie's Avatar
    selchie is offline All Knowing Deity
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    Default Kiwi Culture

    At least one thread discussed the wretched state of Kiwi television, but what about the good cultural offerings? Some of it seeps overseas, such as movies like Whale Rider & Lord of the Rings. We spent ages in Unity Books in Welly, exploring the wall of Kiwi authors, and came away with a sampling. We also saw a couple of good Kiwi plays at Circa Theatre in Welly. I would love to learn of other peoples' recommendations of good Kiwi culture, or at least names to know.

    Of the Kiwi books we bought, I dove into The Whale Rider right away. The rest are in a holding pattern with all the other books I have. Anyway, the book is somewhat different from the movie, but both are wonderful in their own right. I recommend it to those who would like to enhance their understanding of the movie, and/or are interested in a window to Maori culture. I plan to read more of Witi Ihimaera's books when we move over.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

  2. #2
    NickampJacky Guest

    Default Kiwi Culture

    Yes Whale Rider is a great film, it has broadened our minds about NZ, especially the Maori.

    As for LOTR, I think it was the scenery that NZ is blessed with that made it such a phenomena & perhaps the Director......but idont think it could be put under the banner of kiwi culture as such.

    Theres much much more to the culture of NZ other than TV really anyway, the world of wearable art in nelson is a prime example, as are all the small art & craft galleries dotted around. This in my mind is much more of a wholesome culture.

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    selchie's Avatar
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    Default Kiwi Culture

    I agree with your assessment of LOTR not being about New Zealand, though the movie is a Kiwi cultural artifact in so many ways. The Piano was a Kiwi historical piece, wasn't it? It's been so long since I've seen it that I can't recall much. I recommend Once Were Warriors - a depressing but excellent movie about an urban Maori family.

    I had heard about the museum of wearable art in Nelson, but is it really worn out and about? That would be fun, if so. We visited many wonderful art galleries and museums in NZ. We visited Aigantighe, a nice little art museum in Timaru. The art museum in downtown Christchurch is well worth a visit. The National Gallery (?) near Parliment had a wonderful retrospective of Ans Westra's photography when we were there. Te Papa in Wellington is full of Kiwi cultural exhibits. I recommend them all.

    There seems to be a lot of good books, art, music, movies, etc. in NZ. Wonderful stuff for such a small population. Too bad so little of it is noticed out in the wide world.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

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    netchicken is offline Senior Member
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    Default Kiwi Culture

    When talking about NZ culture please don't get started on Katherine Mansfield. :)
    She seems to pop up as one of NZ's greatest writers, almost idolised in certian places, yet was Britsh and spent most of her time overseas.

    The one thing that speaks to me of NZ culture the most is Footrot flats, wonderful comic adventures of a farm dog. That is full of NZ'isms that only a kiwi would pick up.
    [img:326e631081]http://www.theblacksheep.net/images/dog58.jpg[/img:326e631081]
    from http://www.theblacksheep.net/footrot.htm
    Otherwise having a bbq on the beach at christmas and going tramping sum up kiwi culture to me, and the laid back nature that living on a small island at the end of the world gives.

    When we meet people from Europe they often seem stressed and worried about things, war, disease, economy, the environment, with an intensity that is missing by people here. Actually one thing a german told me was that kiwi's never take anything seriously.

    Not long back I was solo tramping in Arthurs Pass, and I realised the joy of being a kiwi in the pure expanses of the nature we have here. To be able to drink the water in the streams and travel minimally marked trails to nice huts, really summed up being a kiwi to me.

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    selchie's Avatar
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    Default Kiwi Culture

    I was wondering about all the hoo-ha over Katherine Mansfield. I skimmed a book of hers, and thought perhaps it might be good for historical/social background. But I was more attracted to the modern authors.

    We enjoyed Footrot Flats in the papers when we were over. We didn't always grok, but figure it's a good way to get into part of the Kiwi psyche.
    If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.
    - Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, mid-1800s

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