The Treaty of Waitangi is the most important document in New Zealand's history. Current Treaty issues and Maori/Pakeha relationships can only be understood within the wider story of New Zealand. As we understand and honour our history, we can acknowledge the need for restoration, healing and right relationships. The public response to previous editions of this bestselling book by Robert Consedine and his daughter Joanna Consedine has been strong and overwhelmingly positive. This 2012 edition updates and expands on the critical issues: the foreshore and seabed debate, Maori access to political power, and the emergence of the Maori Party; the remarkable growth of the Maori economy, self-determination, Maori language and the developments in Maori education; constitutional issues, and the benefits of the Treaty settlement process. New Zealand and all New Zealanders have much to celebrate - and many challenges ahead. Drawing on Robert's unique experience as a leading Treaty educator, the powerful message of this book illustrates how each and every New Zealander across all cultures can discover a new sense of personal and national identity, grounded in an authentic Treaty relationship.
Robert Consedine was raised in an Irish Catholic 'community' in the working-class Christchurch suburb of Addington. From his involvement with the civil-rights movement in the United States to international relief aid visiting of Third World countries, Robert has witnessed the struggle for human dignity in some of the most marginalised environments in the world. Jailed for two weeks for his involvement with the anti-Springbok tour protests of 1981, Robert was deeply affected by stories from Maori prisoners, stories reflecting every kind of dispossession- disconnection from family, land, language, culture, unemployment, abuse, violence, low self-esteem and personal and institutional racism.
Subsequently, Robert and Trish Consedine with the support of a network of Maori and Pakeha were inspired to set up Waitangi Assocaiates-an organisation that uses a combination of innovative educational strategies to assist the people of New Zealand in learning about and creatively confronting our colonial history. Robert has delivered Treaty education workshops in over 200 New Zealand organisations and transported the workshop model to Canada and Australia.
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