Story: Tūranga i te hapori – status in Māori society

Te kaieke tohorā

Te kaieke tohorā

This is Te kaieke tohorā, a Māori translation of Witi Ihimaera's novel The whale rider by Timoti Karetu. The cover shows Paikea, a young East Coast girl, riding a stylised whale. Her ancestor, Paikea, originally named Kahutiaterangi, was a man of high birth. Kahutiaterangi's half-brother Ruatapu had a slave mother, so was deemed to be of low birth. In a rage about his lesser mana Ruatapu tried to drown Paikea – however he was rescued by a whale.

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Reference: Witi Ihimaera, Te kaieke tohorā. Auckland: Reed publishing, 1995

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How to cite this page:

Basil Keane, 'Tūranga i te hapori – status in Māori society - Tribal traditions of status and rank', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 30 November 2023)

Story by Basil Keane, published 5 May 2011