Comparing Native Histories

Over recent years, native historians from the USA and New Zealand, and other countries like Australia, have sought to present the writing of their native histories, with those of native groups overseas.

That is, the question has been posed – how can native historians work together to present comparative native history? What are the frameworks and protocols that might be followed, as set by each native group, in order that the writing of ‘someone else’s history’ does not become an exercise in power relations, as so often happens.

In 2002, Danny was awarded a Fulbright grant to travel across the USA, meeting and working with native historians at various US universities, in search of a tentative answer to this question – though, of course, there cannot be one single answer, such is the nature of history.

Danny was hosted by amazing universities in such places as Honolulu, Seattle, Chicago, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Tucson – as well as an African American university in Washington DC (Howard University).

University of Nebraska, Lincoln, in the mid west of the USA.During those travels, Danny was also hosted by the History Department at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

During that visit, he presented a (very tentative) paper to a symposium of staff and students on the processes of comparing native histories.

To read Danny’s paper, as published in the Te Pouhere Korero Journal in 2002, plse click on the marae image (above, right).