New Proposed Sessions
Informal Session: Mana Moana: We Are Moana, We Are Maui
Currently, there are ongoing international debates via social media by Pacific and non-Pacific peoples about Disneyʼs animated film Moana (known as Disneymoana or on social media) in terms of cultural theft, misappro- priation, representation, commercialization, commodification of sacredness, colonialism, consultation/collaboration, and Pacific Islander agency. While there is recognition that Moana is an animated fictional film, the character Maui is not a fictional character to many; he is a deity to many and a revered ancestor for some.
The Disneymoana movie raises a number of issues that is currently being debated through media and social media with particular reference to cultural theft and islander participation in Disneyʼs Oceanic Story Trust - a group of Pacific Islanders who were recruited by Disney to "authenticate" Disneymoana. These debates show that opinion on the Disneymoana movie within Pacific communities range from apathy seen in comments like "it’s just a movie" to gratitude seen in many comments like "we should be grateful that Disney is putting us on the map" to critiques from a number of Pacific aca- demics, journalists, artists, and filmmaker via online media. The critiques are posted and archived in the Mana Moana: We Are Moana We Are Maui Facebook page and are available as teaching resources.
While the organisers of this session have already made transparent their position on the Disneymoana movie through their petition to Disney that was circulated in July 2016, their public critiques of Disney, and the setting up of the Facebook page Mana Moana: We Are Moana We Are Maui, we welcome participants from all sides of the debate to share their thoughts on the topic of the Disneymoana movie or wider issues of cultural theft, misappropriation, representation, commercialization/commodification, colonialism, consultation, and Pacific Islander agency.
We are looking forward to talanoa at this working session and invite participants to visit the Mana Moana: We Are Moana We Are Maui Facebook page for background reading and follow the online hashtag #ManaMoana for the latest updates on the debate. Here is the link to the Facebook page.
Participants interested in this session should e-mail intention to participate and a topic to either of the organizers.
Nuhisifa Seve-Williams (Matanginifale) - Searching for OST in LOST.
Tēvita O. Ka‘ili (Maui-Tāvā-He-Akó) - Mining the Cultural Seabed of Our Moana for Disneyʼs Moana: A Tāvāist Critique.
ʻOkusitino Māhina (Hūfanga) - Maui as Great Comedian of Our Moana Nui: Intersection of Absurdity and Normality.
Tina Ngata - Māori Storytelling and Visual Culture as a Site of Sovereignty Reclamation.
Anne Keala Kelly - Dis-Mo versus Indigenous Films and Media (working title).
Vince Diaz - "Speaking for the Entire Pacific: Disney and Polynesian Hegemonic Claims to the Entire Pacific."
Brian Kāfakafa Dawson - Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah: From Uncle Remus to Maui.
Ping-Ann Addo, Ashlie Duarte-Smith, Christopher Fung - “We are Moana, We are (also) Filmmakers”
Dionne Fonoti & Micah Van der Ryn (Fepuleaʻi) - Samoan Audience Response to new Disney Moana Film in Samoa and American Samoa.
Ku‘ualoha Ho‘omanawanui - beautiful liars: if your misrepresentation of us is beautiful, are you beyond critique? An ʻŌiwi perspective on DisMo mania.
Tēvita O Ka‘ili, Brigham Young University–Hawai‘i <email@example.com>, Nuhisifa Seve-Williams <firstname.lastname@example.org>