I found the interaction between Cook and the Maori
very interesting. While there was some bloodshed, the
encounter was relatively peaceful compared to others. Cook did
not understand the Maori completely, but he recorded his
observations and eventually came to respect their culture.
When the Maori and Cooks men were exchanging insults, both
parties seem to have come to an understanding even though it
may not have been the most functional or peaceful.
I also thought it was surprising that there is still
conflict between the Maori and the Pakeha; I thought that most
of the conflicts had been resolved after the treaty Waitangi
was signed. It turns out that there is still tension in
between the Maori and the Pakeha especially when examining the
history of New Zealand. Different individuals see Cook
differently as either a hero or villain.
While in New Zealand, I am looking forward to seeing
the Maori culture first hand and trying to find out how it has
changed over time. The Pakeha culture has influenced the Maori
culture and the Maori culture has influenced the Pakeha
culture. I would like to see these two cultures interact.
I also look forward to taking pictures of some of the
landscape that we will see throughout the trip, especially
night landscapes of the cities we stay in, and the sky from
the southern hemisphere. I am excited to learn about the
geology New Zealand and the different marine organisms that
inhabit the beaches we will study.