The Maori: A Study in Resistive Acculturation

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<ul><li><p>The Maori: A Study in Resistive AcculturationAuthor(s): David P. AusubelSource: Social Forces, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Mar., 1961), pp. 218-227Published by: Oxford University PressStable URL: .Accessed: 14/06/2014 07:37</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms &amp; Conditions of Use, available at .</p><p> .JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact</p><p> .</p><p>Oxford University Press is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Social Forces.</p><p> </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 14 Jun 2014 07:37:59 AMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>218 SOCIAL FORCES </p><p>Hypothesis 8: In urban-urban and urban-non- adjacent suburban streams proprietors, managers, and officials will migrate more than the majority of occupational groups. </p><p>Proprietors, managers, and officials rank second among the six occupations in each of the specified streams. </p><p>Hypothesis 9: In urban-urban and suburban-non- adjacent urban streams, migration of craftsmen and foremen and operatives and kindred workers is less than migration of other occupational groups. </p><p>The category of craftsmen and foremen ranks 4.5 in urban-urban streams and the category of opera- tives ranks sixth in the same stream. </p><p>Craftsmen and foremen in suburban-nonad- jacent urban streams rank sixth and operatives rank fifth among the six occupational groups. </p><p>Hypothesis 10: In rural-rural streams, the amount of migration among farm laborers will be much greater than the amount of migration among farmers and farm managers. </p><p>Farm laborers occupy the second position among eight occupational categories while farmers occupy the seventh position in rural-rural streams. </p><p>These results indicate the types of prediction we make from our conceptual scheme. Additional con- firmation of these hypotheses can be found in the larger study along with a detailed discussion of the Bogue and Hagood results. </p><p>The process of deduction of these hypotheses has not yet been formalized, but considerable progress has been made in this direction. When the formali- zation is complete, then the theory can be em- ployed to generate predictions for many other kinds of behavior-fertility, voting, etc. The verification of such predictions should increase our confidence in the value of the scheme for predicting the char- acteristics of internal migration. </p><p>In summary, a theory of internal migration has been stated, hypotheses have been derived, and a number of tests of these hypotheses have been pre- sented. The relationship between environment, social structure, and the decision process is ex- pressed in terms of the head of household as a de- cision maker constrained by occupational char- acteristics. If theories of this type are supported by the data, then considerable simplification of sociol- ogy can be achieved. </p><p>THE MAORI: A STUDY IN RESISTIVE ACCULTURATION* DAVID P. AUSUBEL </p><p>University of Illinois </p><p>ABSTRACT </p><p>Catastrophically defeated a century ago by lBritish colonists, the New Zealand Maori withdrew into isolated villages and thereby resisted acculturation. Although culture contact has increased markedly since World War II, Maori adolescents are currently handicapped in implementing their academic and vocational aspirations because their elders still cling to traditional nonachievement values. </p><p>M ODERN Maori culture offers many opportunities for the investigation of various theoretical problems in accultu- </p><p>ration. It is an excellent example of resistive accul- turation, in which a vigorous Polynesian people </p><p>* The ethnographic and psychological data on which this paper is based were collected by the writer from September 1957 to August 1958 in two North Island communities of New Zealand, one urban and one rural. In each setting, the educational and vocational aspira- tions of fifty Maori and fifty matched pakehia (Euro- pean) secondary school boys, and the kinds of motivations underlying these aspirations, were inten- sively studied by means of structured interviews and specially selected objective and projective tests. The methods of informal interview and participant observa- tion were used to relate obtained Maori-pakeha differ- ences in aspirational and motivational traits to cultural </p><p>and interpersonal determinants in the wider social community. </p><p>The field work was made possible by a Fulbright research grant and by a grant from the University Research Board of the University of Illinois. Prepara- tion of the field data for publication was aided by a grant from the Bureau of Educational Research of the University of Illinois. Thanks are due Pearl Ausubel and Robert M. Tomlinson for statistical assistance in the processing of the data. The complete report, Maori Youth: A Study in Psychological Acculturation, is being published by the Department of Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand, under whose auspices the study was conducted. </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 14 Jun 2014 07:37:59 AMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>RESISTIVE ACCULTURATION 219 </p><p>were disastrously defeated but not annihilated by European (British) colonists, withdrew in reserva- tion-like areas from effective contact with Euro- peans, practiced an attenuated version of their traditional culture for seventy years, and finally, about one generation ago, emerged from this with- drawal to enter the mainstream of a modern Euro- pean culture. The historical parallelism with many American Indian cultures is striking, except for the fact that the Maori have emerged from withdrawal on a more permanent basis and on a much larger scale than any comparable American Indian group, and are participating in New Zealand national life in a much more complete and in- timate fashion than is typical of the Indian in modern American culture. </p><p>Through what mechanisms was it possible to maintain relatively intact during the period of withdrawal many of the basic cultural values and features of the traditional Maori social system? What factors led eventually to the gradual break- down of Maori village life and its associated pat- terns of social organization? What effects has the sudden entrance of the Maori into New Zealand national life had on intercultural and interracial relations, on Maori youth, and on relationships between the latter and their elders? What are the foreseeable consequences of this increased inter- cultural contact within the next few decades? And, most important of all, how and through what mech- anisms of cultural transmission has this changing sequence of resistive acculturation altered tradi- tional patterns of striving, status, and achieve- ment in Maori society? </p><p>INITIAL MAORI-PAKEHA CONTACT AND CONFLICT </p><p>The initial stage of Maori-pakeha interaction, following the rediscovery of New Zealand in 1769 by Captain Cook, was characterized by the ex- change of a limited number of specialized goods and services without any fundamental changes in Maori social or economic organization.' The Maori were intensely eager to acquire all of the benefits of European technology without surrendering their social institutions, core values, or distinctive way of life. As intercultural contact became more highly regularized, the Maori quickly adopted European clothing, implements, agricultural commodities and technical processes, and even constructed timber mills and acquired coastal vessels to trans- </p><p>port their produce to distant markets. They pro- duced surpluses for barter and profit, and learned both the use of money as a medium of exchange and the technique of driving a hard bargain. The introduction of musket, ball and powder intensified the frequency and destructiveness of intertribal warfare and led to the large-scale migration and displacement of many tribes from their traditional lands. Newly introduced European diseases had no less deadly an impact on the Maori population. Later, as the influence of the missionaries grew and as British sovereignty was established, the institu- tions of intertribal warfare, cannibalism, slavery and polygamy were proscribed. </p><p>Despite these far-reaching effects on Maori culture, however, goods were still produced by ordinary native methods, and the organization of activity was carried out on the usual lines. The family or hapt2 worked under the leadership of their head man, the toiunga or priestly expert had his place to fill, ... . among them- selves the former Maori system of exchange and dis- tribution of goods, of ownership and acquisition of property remained practically unaffected.3 </p><p>The beginning of permanent colonization 'in 1840 inaugurated a new phase of Maori accultura- tion. Colonization represented a serious threat to the cultural autonomy of the Maori and to the integrity of their social and economic institutions. An element of coercion was added to their previ- ously voluntary acceptance of certain selected as- pects of pakeha culture. In acceding to colonization and British sovereignty,'and in placing their trust in treaty guarantees the Maori failed to reckon realistically with the predatory designs of the colonists who were determined by any means, fair or foul, to obtain the most desirable land in New Zealand and to establish the supremacy of their own economic and political system. When the Maori responded to coercive and illegal alienation of their tribal lands by refusing in organized fashion to part with any more of their landed estate, the colonists finally resorted to force of arms and con- fiscation; and after a dozen years of both large- scale and guerrilla warfare (1860-1872), involving on one side or the other most of the major tribes of the North Island, they eventually gained their ends. </p><p>1 Raymond Firth, Primitive Economics of the New Zealand Maori, (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1929), pp. 449-456. </p><p>2 A Maori subtribe, i.e., a group of extended families, each tracing descent to a common ancestor. On the same basis several hapu constitute a tribe, the largest unit in Maori political organization. </p><p>3 Firth, op. cit., p. 455. </p><p>This content downloaded from on Sat, 14 Jun 2014 07:37:59 AMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p></p></li><li><p>220 SOCIAL FORCES </p><p>WITHDRAWAL </p><p>The war and the confiscations left the Maori bitter, resentful, and dissillusioned. They lost con- fidence in themselves and in the pakeha. European motives, values, customs, education and religion became suspect. The Maori people withdrew from contact with the pakeha and surrendered to apathy, despondency, demoralization, and eco- nomic stagnation. They lived in isolated villages and reverted to a subsistence type of agricultural economy supplemented by land clearing and sea- sonal labor for pakeha farmers and for the railway and public works departments. Various messianic, superstitious, and nationalistic adjustment cults flourished during this period of withdrawal, Al- though the old communal system of common ownership of land, cooperative labor organized under the direction of chief and tokunga, and shar- ing of the harvest among the kinship group was largely abandoned, much of Maori social organiza- tion and ideology tended to remain intact. Mutual assistance, cooperative sharing of the economic burdens and vicissitudes of life, lavish hospitality, and scrupulous recognition of kinship responsibili- ties continued as cardinal values in Maori culture. The Maori village, as of old, was centered on the marae4 and carved meeting house; and traditional ceremonial occasions-anniversaries, the tangi (mortuary rites), and the formal welcoming of vis- itors-were celebrated as before. The Maori re- tained their language and preserved many of their social customs (e.g., tapu, greeting by pressing of noses, tattooing, earth oven feasting), arts and crafts, songs, dances, legends, genealogies, and oral traditions. Even though the chiefly families largely relinquished their roles as economic organizers and entrepreneurs, they retained their hereditary social status and took the lead in village, tribal, and cere- monial matters. </p><p>PERPETUATIVE MECHANISMS </p><p>The results of acculturation are typically classi- fied under three headings:' (a) complete acceptance or assimilation; (b) adaptation (harmonious blend- ing, coexistence of dichotomous alternatives, syncretism, emergent reformulation); and (c) reac- </p><p>tion (contra-acculturative, revivalistic, perpetua- tive movements). Within the last-named type of response Linton6 and Hallowell7 distinguish be- tween "magical" and "rational" varieties. Assimi- lative acculturation typically occurs when an at- tractive new culture is introduced gradually and insidiously (e.g., through missionaries, traders, and their descendants) without mass colonization or violent head-on collision between the two cul- tural systems as in Hawaii,8 particularly if the indigenous culture lacks vigor and stability or is productive of anxiety and dissatisfaction. At the opposite end of the acculturative continuum, when, on the one hand, the indigenous culture- is vigorous and stable and has many psychologically satisfying and adaptive features, and the new cul- ture, on the other, is introduced abruptly and coercively through massive colonization or force of arms, resistive acculturation tends to occur, pro- vided that the defeat of the native people stops short of annihilation and that relatively complete withdrawal into physically and socially isolated areas is both possible and acceptable. Under less extreme conditions, e.g., Fiji9 and Samoa,10 where the indigenous culture is adequately vigorous and productive of satisfactions, and where Europeans either do not attempt an overly aggressive pro- gram of subjugation, colonization, and alienation of land, or as a matter of policy seek to preserve native institutions, various forms of adaptive ac- culturation take place. </p><p>The motivation for perpetuating the distinctive features of traditional Maori culture and for resist- ing absorption by European culture inhered first in the vigorousness of its adaptive properties. Adaptiveness was forced on the Maori by virtue of their migration from a semi-tropical climate only four centuries prior to European contact. They alone of all the Polynesian peoples were obliged to devise drastical...</p></li></ul>


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