Haka, New Zealand national symbol

Haka, New Zealand national symbol

A universal dance associated with the All Blacks, it is a dance that transcends rugby, a practice by which New Zealanders represent and defend their land. But then, how is the Hakka a mark of identity for this South Pacific nation?

Tongue retraction, eyes bulging, mime decapitation, these are the hallmarks of the Haka. ” It is a mark of identity for New Zealanders. This dance is based on the gestures of the Maori ancestors says Ian Borthwick, a New Zealand-based journalist. Taught from childhood, the haka is practiced in colleges, high schools and even in the military, appealing to the spirit of Māori warriors. These indigenous people of New Zealand have long been feared by the colonists. To defend their lands upon the arrival of many European immigrants in the 19th century, Māori created several rituals specific to their culture, including the haka.

Ian Borthwick insists on the mental, physical and psychological investment this dance requires: “ When you practice Haka, you express your identity through your body. The idea behind it a bit: This is who we are. We represent and defend this place “.

Regional identity mark

The haka is a sign of the very strong identity bond between Māori and their ancestors. ” Māori watch over their land, and the concept of respect is very strong there Reports by Maxime Mermoz, the former France international who competed in the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. The Haka is a symbol of a culture based on the transmission of knowledge across generations.

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It is one of the rituals that perpetuated Maori culture within New Zealand society. ” Maori culture is everywhere. Before the start of the competition, we had to perform several rituals as a sign of gratitude to our elders. Remember Maxim Mermoz. The former rugby player also mentions the existence of museums essential to understanding the importance of this tribe in the country’s history, such as Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington.

All blacks as ambassadors

The All Blacks have always been ambassadors for their country, and they know it’s part of their mission. Remember Borthwick. Through their athleticism and also their planetary aura, the internationals who wear the vest with the silver fern represent New Zealand’s identity in the eyes of the world at large. ” Their actions are monitored. They have behavioral obligations He continued.

The haka is performed before a meeting, and is a way for all blacks to surpass themselves. Maxime Mermoz emphasizes the intensity of the moment in which the full weight of their cultural identity is felt. ” Haka a lot of emotions. It is a declaration to fight to defend their nation Explains the French team that was defeated by the Blacks in the 2011 World Cup Final.

For Ian Borthwick, The Blacks gave the haka an international dimension and allowed New Zealand to become known The French New Zealand journalist, an expert on the history of this archipelago, can only confirm this: ” Haka, like rugby, are symbols of New Zealand heritage in their own right “.

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Gregoire Allen

“Defeat is not my worst enemy, the fear of defeat.” Rafael Nadal.


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