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Witi Tame Ihimaera-Smiler, DCNZM, QSM (born 7 February, 1944), generally known as Witi Ihimaera ( ), is a New Zealandmarker author, and is often regarded as the most prominent Māori writer alive.

Biography

Ihimaera was born near Gisbornemarker, a town in the east of New Zealandmarker's North Islandmarker and is of Māori descent (Te Aitanga-a-Mahaki) and Anglo-Saxon descent through his father, Tom. He attended Church College of New Zealand in Temple View, Hamilton, New Zealand. He was the first Māori writer to publish both a novel and a book of short stories. He began to work as a diplomat at the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1973, and served at various diplomatic posts in Canberramarker, New Yorkmarker, and Washington, D.C.marker Ihimaera remained at the Ministry until 1989, although his time there was broken by several fellowships at the University of Otagomarker in 1975 and Victoria University of Wellingtonmarker in 1982 (where he graduated with a BA). In 1990, he took up a position at the University of Aucklandmarker, where he is Professor, Distinguished Creative Fellow in Māori Literature.

Most of Ihimaera's work consists of short stories or novels. He has written a considerable number of stories, with the most notable being works such as Tangi, Pounamu, Pounamu, and The Whale Rider (the last of which became a film of the same name). His stories generally portray Māori culture in modern New Zealand. His work often focuses on problems within contemporary Māori society.

In 1995, Ihimaera published Nights in the Gardens of Spain, a semi-autobiographical work about a married father of two daughters coming out. He had come out to himself in 1984 and began the work, but out of sensitivity to his daughters, did not finish or publish it then.

He was made a Distinguished Companion in the New Zealand Order of Merit (equivalent to a knighthood in the old honours system) in 2004 for services to literature.

In 2004, his nephew Gary Christie Lewis married Lady Davina Windsor, becoming the first Māori to marry into the British Royal Family.

Plagiarism

In 2009 book reviewer Jolisa Gracewood detected evidence of plagiarism in Ihimaera's 2009 novel The Trowenna Sea.. On 9 Nov 2009 Ihimaera admitted that he had plagiarised other authors when writing the book.

Novels

  • Tangi (1973)
  • Whanau (1974)
  • The Matriarch (1986)
  • The Whale Rider (1987)
  • Bulibasha: King of the Gypsies (1994)
  • Nights in the Gardens of Spain (1995)
  • The Dream Swimmer (1997)
  • Woman Far Walking (2000)
  • The Uncle's Story (2000)
  • Sky Dancer (2004)
  • Whanau II (2004)
  • The Rope of Man (2005) - features 'Tangi', and its sequel 'The Return'
  • Band of Angels (2005)
  • The Trowenna Sea (2009)


Short story collections

  • A Sense of Belonging
  • Pounamu Pounamu
  • The New Net Goes Fishing
  • Growing Up Māori
  • Yellow Brick Road
  • Beginning of the Tournament
  • A Game of Cards
  • Return To Oz
  • Ask the Posts of the House
  • Dustbins
  • The Whale
  • Big Brother Little Sister


See also



References

  1. [1]
  2. Article about The Trowenna Sea


External links






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