Intergenerational Intimacies: a whakapapa conceptualisation of kai (webinar)


Hana Burgess & Haylee Koroi in conversation with Naomi Simmonds
Co-hosted by Toi Tangata & Te Kōmata o te Tonga, The Deep South National Science Challenge

In this webinar, we bring to the fore a whakapapa conceptualisation of kai, one that centers whanaungatanga – being in good relation. When we talk about kai, we are talking about the food we eat, but through whakapapa, the concept ‘kai’ evokes the many layers of whanaungatanga that constitute kai – whanaungatanga ki ngā atua, ki te taiao, ki te tangata, ki a koe anō. Here, the concept of whanaungatanga – being in good relation, is brought to the centre.

In centering whanaungatanga, we recognise that for our generation being in good relation with kai requires seeing through, and beyond, settler colonialism. Therefore, this kōrero will also seek to expose some of the ways that settler colonialism, and the imposition of hierarchies of race, class and gender, continue to damage and disrupt our relationships with kai.

Through whakapapa, kai is a call for intergenerational vision. It is a call for community and solidarity. It is an acknowledgement that kai is not separate from te taiao, kai is te taiao. Being in good relation with kai is acknowledging the expansive ways that kai nourishes us.

In conversation with Naomi Simmonds from Te Kōmata o te Tonga, The Deep South National Science Challenge, this webinar invites us to deeply consider our relationships with kai, to immerse ourselves in the intergenerational intimacies that kai evokes.

Hana and Haylee’s paper Intergenerational Intimacies is also available for download.


Haylee Anne Koroi

Haylee hails from the Far North - from Kaitaia and the valley of Utakura, at the end of the Hokianga. Haylee has been involved in both local and national responses to tiaki taiāo, and has represented Aotearoa on the world stage, as a part of Te Ara Whatu.

Hana Burgess

Naomi Simmonds

Naomi is a researcher and environmental specialist whose background is geography, environmental planning and kaupapa Māori. A member of both our Kāhui Māori and our Engagement Team, Naomi is also a co-director of Tūānuku Ltd. Naomi’s research interests include Māori and Indigenous geographies, freshwater and iwi and hapū resource management, Māori maternities, whānau wellbeing and Indigenous methodologies.