Vugalei : voices and silences of what and how we know : indigenous Fijian epistemology and implications for education

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dc.contributor.advisor Smith, Linda Tuhiwai en Nabobo-Baba, Unaisi en 2013-04-12T02:20:54Z en 2013-04-12T02:20:54Z en 2005 en
dc.identifier.citation Thesis (PhD)--University of Auckland, 2005 en
dc.identifier.uri en
dc.description Full text is available to authenticated members of The University of Auckland only. en
dc.description.abstract This thesis sets out to examine Indigenous Fijian knowledge: its nature, its creation, organisation, maintenance, modification and transmission. The relationship between Indigenous Fijian epistemology, cultural knowledge and worldview is also examined. Implications of these for education are then intimated. This thesis chooses to privilege indigenous knowledge and epistemology and has made space for Indigenous Fijian voices to express and register, from their standpoint as a people belonging to a specific vanua what they perceive to be their important knowledge and epistemology. This making of spaces is important so as to affirm indigenous knowledge and epistemology as well as enable and empower it to take its place within the larger body of knowledge. Literature on indigenous epistemology, cultural knowledge and worldview of four different cultural groups, namely: Maori, Aboriginal Australian, Solomon Island and Hawaiian, was used to inform the study. The thesis is also informed by a number of theoretical positions including feminist standpoint epistemology and Kaupapa Maori Theory. The thesis has also been informed by post-colonial theory, specifically in terms of 'voice', 'hybridity' and 'othering'. The research utilises ethnography and its attendant methods: participant observation, interviews and archival research. The researcher utilized as well appropriate protocols of indigenous research including requests for interviews, as well as requests for access to the community. The study found that the Vugalei perceive their world as comprising three but interrelated parts: the heaven, the underworld, and the earth. Other factors pertaining to worldview such as spirituality, clan belongingness and relationships are also highlighted. These determine and influence their cultural knowledge and epistemology. In terms of cultural knowledge, the four main concepts identified are vanua, spirituality, relationships, and customary behaviour and ideals. The Vugalei theorise their knowledge through Vanua constructs: clans, social positions and processes, knowledge is framed, contested, transmitted, critiqued, sourced and recreated. Changes to indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing have been identified, especially that which has been brought about by the church. The study, the first of its kind on Indigenous Fijian epistemology and cultural knowledge, will hopefully help to give a fresh dimension to the ongoing debate on indigenous Fijian education and development. It also has the potential to inform educational policy and practice for indigenous education in Fiji and the Pacific, and perhaps other aspects of indigenous Fijian development. en
dc.publisher ResearchSpace@Auckland en
dc.relation.ispartof PhD Thesis - University of Auckland en
dc.relation.isreferencedby UoA99155856914002091 en
dc.rights Items in ResearchSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. en
dc.rights Restricted Item. Available to authenticated members of The University of Auckland en
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dc.title Vugalei : voices and silences of what and how we know : indigenous Fijian epistemology and implications for education en
dc.type Thesis en The University of Auckland en Doctoral en PhD en 2013-04-11T23:53:44Z en
dc.rights.holder Copyright: The author en

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