August 23, 2016
Te Arawa history lives on
A big day for Te Arawa tomorrow with the relaunch of the late Don Stafford's History of the Arawa People.
University of Otago Maori studies Professor Paora Tapsell, who was mentored by Mr Stafford, says 50 years on the book stands up as a major achievement.
He says the historian drew together official records and land court minutes with the stories he heard as a young man travelling to every corner of Te Arawa rohe.
"When he walked across all these different landscapes of our ancestors with the old people he came to realise the history of our country, as young as we think of it, is incredible history, it has all the drama and depth and excitement that any European historical narrative may have, but far more relevant. It is actually the landscape we live on," Professor Tapsell says.
Te Arawa, which is being republished by Oratia Press, will be relaunched at the Rotorua Museum, in the historic bathhouse Mr Stafford campaigned to save from demolition.
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