'Your child is your whakapapa': Maori Considerations of Assisted Reproduction and Human Relatedness

Marewa Glover, Benedicta Rousseau


Based on data from the first study of Maori attitudes to assisted reproductive technologies, this article analyses the domaining of knowledge regarding biological and cultural reproduction. In particular, we examine the ways in which research participants protray whakapapa as an essential human and cultural resource, placed at the centre of considerations regarding relatedness and the appropriate use of AHR. The socio-political and historical circumstances of colonisation and Treaty settlement processes are investigated as contexts of 'possibility' that influence differing interpretations of whakapapa in relation to descent and contemporary kinship. In conclusion we suggest aspects of Maori concepts of relatedness and reproduction that warrant detailed ethnographic study in relation to contemporary political, economic and social change in Aotearoa/New Zealand.


HART, Maori reproduction, kinship, whakapapa

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11157/sites-vol4iss2id76