Working Session: Mana Moana: Protecting Sacredness
Organizers: Tēvita O. Ka’ili and Nuhisifa Seve-Williams
We are currently engaging in a global debate via media and social media by Indigenous Oceanians and others on related issues, such as cultural theft, cultural appropriation, (mis)representation, commercialization, commodification of sacredness, colonialism, consultation/collaboration, and Pacific Islander agency.
Four years ago, Disneyʼs movie Moana raised a number of critical issues for Indigenous scholars that are still debated through media and social media with particular reference to cultural theft, islander participation, and commodification of sacredness. These debates showed that opinion on the Disney’s Moana and other related issues (such as Dwayne Johnsonʼs proposed bio-pic of King Kamehameha) 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/Hollywood is putting us on the map" to critiques from a number of Indigenous scholars via online media. The critiques are posted and archived in the Mana Moana: We Are Moana We Are Maui Facebook page and other social media sites.
While the organisers of this virtual session have already made transparent their position on Disney’s Moana 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 Disneyʼs Moana, Aloha Poke, Bula, kava, motifs, hula movements, Indigenous knowledge, navigational knowledge, Hollywoodʼs King Kamehameha movie or wider issues of cultural theft, cultural appropriation, (mis)representation, commercialization/commodification, colonialism, consultation, and Indigenous agency.
We are looking forward to talanoa at this virtual working session and invite participants to visit the Mana Moana: We Are Moana We Are Maui Facebook page and for background reading. Here is the link to the Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/manamoanawearemoanawearemaui/
Participants interested in this session should e-mail intention to participate and a topic either to Tēvita O Kaʻili (firstname.lastname@example.org) or to Nuhisifa Seve-Williams (email@example.com) by 15 December 2020.
For more information, please contact Tēvita O. Kaʻili, Brigham Young University Hawaiʻi <firstname.lastname@example.org> and Nuhisifa Seve-Williams <email@example.com>