There is a growing interest amongst Maori academics concerning the development of research methodologies for Maori contexts and the influence of an evolving ideology that is loosely referred to as kaupapa Maori. But the paradigm is subject to powerful ideological influences which, if they remain unchecked, may militate against its main objective: to liberate Maori from prescriptive Euro-centric, typically positivistic, frameworks. This dilemma stems from the process of active dehumanisation that kaupapa Maori is attempting to thwart: colonisation. Paradoxically, it has been the hegemonic saturation of Te Ao Maori that has subtlely, but effectively, rendered new expressions of Maori educational emancipation in juxta-position with empathetic paradigms that have been developed in the West. The purpose of this article is not to denigrate the valued and productive efforts of those engaged in the process of reconstructing Maori educational research, but to address some of the tensions in the research.
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