New Zealand Māori society experienced drastic urbanization as many Māori left their tribal territories and migrated into urban areas. However, while recent retribalization has drawn attention to traditional tribal groups, the reality of migrant Māori in cities remains invisible. Accordingly, this article focuses on the Papakura Māori community in south Auckland, where the inherent duality of periphery in the geopolitical sense is clearly illustrated by the ambiguity of tangata whenua and the presence of diverse migrant Māori. An ethnographic analysis of the marae establishment revealed that most Māori emphasized the residents’ shared attributes in order to plan the marae and construct a ‘Papakura Māori’ identity. At the same time, however, they often reinforced tribal identity and negotiated on that basis. It can be said that both tactics were necessary in securing the marae as their tūrangawaewae, for establishing an urban marae required ceaseless negotiations among the Māori involved. This case demonstrates the dynamism between the new ‘Papakura Māori’ identity and traditional tribal identities, which can be understood more meaningfully through a consideration of the geopolitical features of Papakura and the inherent duality of periphery.
This is a preliminary excavation report on the Kasasinabwana shell midden of Wari Island. We seek to establish a chronological history of prehistoric ceramics in southern Massim in order to assess Geoffrey Irwin’s colonization hypothesis regarding the Early Papuan Pottery (EPP) period. An analysis of ceramics, other tools and faunal remains has allowed the definition of three ceramic periods, corresponding physically to Upper, Middle and Lower layers, in the inhabited history of the site. In the Upper Layers, which make up the main deposit of the site, links to the ethnographic Kula or Kune are indicated by imported pottery and certain types of shellfish. During this period, the intensive use and discarding of shellfish made the site a shell midden. The earlier era (1600–2300 cal BP) corresponding to the Middle Layers contains red-slipped and related types of pottery. The Lower Layers contain much older pottery, referred to here as Kasasinabwana Plain Pottery (KPP). The dates of these layers are 2300–2600, 2600–2800 cal BP, and the KPP may provide evidence of an earlier colonization other than that of the EPP. This research reveals Post-Lapita variability in western Melanesia and allows for revision of previous colonization theories. Further analysis of the Kasasinabwana midden is necessary for purposes of comparison with other sites in Melanesia.
We report a total of fourteen new skeletal remains (eight adults, one juvenile and five infants) excavated from the Hasahapei burial site (A.D. 1300–1600) on Fais Island, Federated States of Micronesia. The Fais crania show an average or medium morphology with two individuals showing high skull morphology. The morphological trait of shoveling incisors, indicating Asian ancestry, is also present. The two females, SK7 and SK11, exhibit differences under PCA analysis. More cranial samples are needed in order to draw robust conclusions, however. Estimates of stature indicate that, compared to Micronesian and Polynesian populations, the Fais males are shorter and the Fais females are similar in height or taller. Marks of occupational stress and of trauma to the vertebrae, as well as evidence of degenerative joint diseases, may indicate that Fais individuals lived a rather active and physical lifestyle. A treponemal disease, most likely yaws, was also present in two Fais individuals; this indicates childhood disease. A high rate of enamel hypoplasias also suggests poor nutrition or illness among the Fais. The similarly high incidence of caries and calculus formations indicate a carbohydrate-rich diet and poor oral hygiene. Brown stains on the enamel are due to hypocalcification and hypoplasia, meaning the stains originated in food and plaque and not in the betel chewing common in the Marianas.