Introduction: Migration and Diaspora Histories and Screen Representation in New Zealand

  • Arezou Zalipour


This introductory chapter synthesizes some crucial moments in the history of New Zealand in order to discuss the social and cultural context in which diasporic film and film-making have emerged and developed in this country. My intention has been to open new ways of thinking about the complexities of migration and diasporic movement within the bicultural framework of New Zealand society as it engages with and is challenged by diasporic formations. In this chapter, I engage with Māori culture in the contemporary social and demographic mix of Aotearoa to draw out connections and also to distinguish Māori representations on screen (including films by Māori) from diasporic representations in New Zealand film and film-making. The chapter also sets out the book’s parameters in its use of the concept of diaspora. With its history of settler colonization, indigenous peoples and a wide range of immigrants arriving not only from the neighbouring islands in the Pacific Ocean but also from as far as the Caspian Sea, the New Zealand context is complex. I believe this complexity demands a rather different approach to the conceptualization of diasporic film and film-making, one rooted in a diasporic consciousness, engendered by the sense and actual experience of displacement and identity (re)construction and negotiation over the course of time. This chapter also introduces the book’s structure: Part I Representation and Production and Part II Behind the Lens: A look Inside the New Zealand Screen Industry.


Diaspora film Film Film-making Cinema Asian diaspora Pacific diaspora Minority film Asian New Zealand cinema Indigenous film Fourth cinema Māori representation Migrant Representation Screen Multiculturalism Migrant-indigenous relation Consciousness Diasporic imagination Diversity Migrant film-making Minor cinema Cinema of small nations New Zealand film Production New Zealand Film Commission Short film Feature film Documentary Web series Multicultural film-making Collective film-making Interstitial film-making Community production Film industry Collective production Superdiversity 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arezou Zalipour
    • 1
  1. 1.Auckland University of TechnologyAucklandNew Zealand

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