Why are there so few Maori

Cultural characteristics in New Zealand

Twelve hours ahead of German time, a New Zealander in an outdoor jacket is standing on the summit of the after a long hike Mount Cook. With his mobile phone he tries to get the latest rugby results and cheers about the victory of the All blacks. This scenario is of course an absolute one cliche. It is much more likely that he and his friends will watch the game live in Eden Park tracked.

During a study abroad in New Zealand, the many cultural characteristics of the country are not only revealed in everyday study life. So the friendly New Zealand Gidday Don't panic in you, it is useful to familiarize yourself with the cultural idiosyncrasies of New Zealand. A cultural preparation for studying abroad prevents the dreaded culture shock.

Today's cultural peculiarities in New Zealand express themselves through certain characteristics, which in many cases reflect the British origins and their merging with different cultures. New Zealand society is mainly characterized by Willingness to help, respect and solidarity out. Most of the people live in urban regions. The New Zealand flag is a testament to the historical connection with Great Britain and the Commonwealth. The national symbols are the kiwi, the silver fern and the color black.

One of the most important reasons to study in New Zealand is to get your own picture of the relaxed local culture. Cultural differences are not an obstacle, but an opportunity new perspectives to get to know.

Origins of New Zealand Culture

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Cultural identity: The integration of the Māori culture in all areas of life is one of the many cultural characteristics in New Zealand.

New Zealand have changed over time different cultures and ethnicities settled. First and foremost, New Zealand culture is divided into Pākehā and Māori cultures. The Māori were the first settlers in the land of the great wide cloud in the 14th century AD. After the Dutchman Abel Tasman New Zealand discovered three centuries later, gradually more and more Europeans settled on the two islands. The British in particular came in large numbers in the 18th century. With Pākehā the Māori refer to the European settlers. The term is also used today for non-Māori.

The coexistence of cultures was shaped by war and displacement until the second half of the 20th century. The ratio has been improving again since the 1970s. Especially through the Immigration of Pacific islanders as well as South and East Asians New Zealand society changed dramatically in the 1980s. Today, New Zealand is home to many different cultures and races, and the country's society is considered to be multicultural.

As a former colony of the Kingdom of England, New Zealand's traditions and holidays remain to this day British coined. The nation celebrates the birthday of the head of state, the Queen, as well as the Christian festivals of Easter and Christmas. Another important holiday is the Waitangi Dayto commemorate the 1840 agreement of the same name. The Māori New Year, Matariki, is a nationally celebrated, but not yet a public holiday.

Other areas also bear witness to the close ties to Great Britain. That doesn't just count Fish & Chips as the most popular Takeaway. The New Zealand study system also developed in line with Great Britain. For example, the then University of New Zealand had all written work corrected and graded there until the Second World War.

How to deal with the British national anthem God save the Queen clearly shows the change in New Zealand. It is now customary to alternate between singing the stanzas in English and Māori. Besides, New Zealand is the only country with two national anthems. The New Zealanders have been entitled to it since 1977 God defend New Zealand also reverently.

Even if New Zealand is geographically apart from the political events, events in the world do not leave the island nation untouched. The country fought in both world wars and is today in the middle of global events. New Zealand is innovative and keen to experiment, especially in the area of ​​technology. Media literacy is part of teaching at schools. The cultural shift in turning away from British leadership gradually transformed the country. To this particular Identity in the melting pot To give better expression, the New Zealanders recently even voted on a new flag.

Features of New Zealand culture

Cultural peculiarities in New Zealand express themselves, for example, through characteristics that stand out in comparison to Germany. Our students, who were studying abroad in New Zealand, describe the people there time and again in their testimonials as especially friendly, helpful, relaxed and open-hearted.

Today's New Zealand Culture is diverse and is of course not expressed by just a few features. The British origins and the influences of the Māori as well as Asian or European immigrants shape New Zealand society to this day. A multicultural nation emerged whose values ​​are mainly based on today mutual respect and trust based. Showing initiative is also a welcome quality in an ambitious society based on solidarity. Some features that the Down to Earth-Mentality of New Zealand culture, we will briefly introduce you to the following.

Optimism and Can Do-Mentality

A positive outlook on life is widespread in New Zealand. Through this general confidence appears any problem, no matter how big, can be solved. For this reason, many New Zealanders are reluctant to directly decline a request or idea. Instead, the search for a suitable, albeit short-term, solution begins.

The origin of this activism ‘may lie in the geography of the country. Some of the people lived in areas that were difficult to access and were always responsible for themselves or dependent on the help of neighbors. So it was a necessity to take action yourself in the event of difficulties.

These Can Do-Mentality promotes innovative and solution-oriented workthat is steadily advancing New Zealand society. It is not for nothing that the myth exists that New Zealanders can have any problem with one No. 8 Wire to solve. This attitude resulted in some practical inventions such as earthquake shock absorbers, electric fences or the electronic fuel pump.

Solidarity and individualistic

Another striking feature of New Zealand culture is the solidarity and helpfulness of the people. Support in every way is often a matter of course, especially for newcomers to the country. For this reason, many state institutions, for example in the education sector, are excellently developed to promote the residents of New Zealand equally. At the universities in New Zealand, students benefit from the extensive range of services and an active campus life.

At the same time, the solidarity-based help is accompanied by the expectation that everyone contributes as best they can and theirs social contribution perform. At university this means that many people are committed to their fellow students or the region.

This individualistic attitude can be found in many Anglo-Saxon countries. Class structures were frowned upon early on by the egalitarian British immigrants. Instead, New Zealand took on a pioneering role in some ways. Women's suffrage, the welfare state and trade unions were established here early on. A cooperative collaboration was already considered useful and expedient back then. Therefore, although there is a social safety net in New Zealand, everyone is ultimately responsible for themselves and their nuclear families.

Universal and open

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New Zealand is now a multicultural nation that caters to individual needs and promotes equal opportunities.

Globalization and immigration have always been central to New Zealand society. Auckland is considered the largest Polynesian city in the world due to the high Polynesian population.

The coexistence of the different cultures in New Zealand naturally also harbors a certain potential for conflict. To counteract these problems has been one for several decades respectful and open interaction with other cultures and perspectives to everyday life in New Zealand. In addition, a fundamental openness to individual needs developed in order to treat all people equally in the sense of universalism.

Cultural diversity and openness can be seen in all areas. Official languages ​​are, for example, English, Māori and Sign Language (NZSL). At the predominantly barrier-free universities, the services on offer cater to the various needs of students. The permeable study system also enables a excellent education regardless of origin.

The Māori culture and their traditions have a special place. Places and streets in New Zealand usually have an English and Maori name. Maori teaching and learning can be found at the three state Wānanga and New Zealand universities usually provide information in Māori. There are also numerous courses and some degree programs that deal with the culture of the Māori.

Given this striving for equal opportunities, it is not surprising that New Zealand is considered one of the least corrupt countries in the world.

Flat hierarchies and handling of status symbols

In New Zealand, cultural or social origins play a minor role. Actions and personal accomplishments are more important as specific evidence or certificates. Similar to the American way of life in the US people always see options to achieve all of their goals with enough will to work.

Flat hierarchies are common both at universities and in later working life. That means, Superiors and lecturers can be contacted at any time and also by the first name. Communication and information exchange in a direct and informal way is important in order to work together constructively and in a solution-oriented manner. Companies value the expertise of individuals and teams. Students already practice this way of working at universities through group work or practical projects.

Status symbols have little value in New Zealand culture. Wealth and social status are not particularly emphasized as this is quickly seen as bragging rights. In the work environment, the style of clothing is casual and domestic helpers or nannies are more the exception.

This togetherness at eye level also includes a balanced one Work-life balance. Many New Zealanders work to live and happily grant their desires to enjoy life.

Sociable and indulgent

Kiwi fruit like to do things togetherto get to know their fellow human beings and to discover their homeland together. On many of the holidays, it is common to get together with family and friends. International students learn this life above all from one person Homestay know.

Many New Zealanders spend their free time at home or in nature. Eating or drinking together plays a big role in everyday life and always offers an opportunity to meet. The main meal takes place in the evening with the family. With a so-called Pot luck the request applies bring a plateso that each guest brings something to eat. New Zealanders meet on Fridays for After work drinks, usually without an attachment.

Those who stay in one of the student residences on campus will also experience the hospitality and sociability of their fellow students in New Zealand up close. At the universities there is one busy campus life with some events and clubs. Parties usually take place in the student dormitories or students meet up Club hopping. The pub culture is not as pronounced as in Great Britain or Ireland. But it is also customary in New Zealand to order a round for fellow campaigners in the pubs, the so-called Shouting. In return, the others invite you to the next round.

The gastronomy does not serve alcohol on Sundays. In some cases, B.Y.O. (Bring your own). This means that guests aged 18 and over are allowed to bring their own alcoholic beverages, which they have in special Bottle stores to buy. The Consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in public places and drunkenness will not be tolerated in public. It is natural for smokers to ask permission from bystanders. Smoking is prohibited in all public buildings in New Zealand.

Sport and closeness to nature

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The love of nature is deeply rooted in New Zealand culture and the locals love to tour together.

In New Zealand, people like to keep moving not only mentally, but also physically. Are in the outdoor paradise Hitchhiking, Kayaking or skiing are popular leisure activities. Many have a special love for water. The metropolis of Auckland is not considered to be for nothing City of Sails. The special bond with nature and appropriately maintained hiking or nature reserves are a reason for many students to discover New Zealand, especially on weekends.

To protect the unique nature, apply strict entry requirements, which students should definitely find out before arriving to study.

Team sports are very important in New Zealand. In addition to rugby union, the national sport is cricket in summer and netball, especially for women. The The list of relevant sports in New Zealand is long. All over the world, the New Zealanders stand out for their success in rugby. Here, too, respect for one another plays an important role, both on and off the sports field. The players accept the decisions of the referee without much discussion and the integrity of the opponents is a priority for everyone involved. In addition, the fans mingle in the stands to cheer their teams on together.

The All blacks, New Zealand's most famous rugby team, also emphasize the cultural connection with the Māori. The team leads you on special occasions Haka off, a ritual dance of the Māori. This spectacle is a special honor for the opponent.

Behavioral tips for New Zealand

Cultural characteristics in New Zealand include certain behaviors that, as in all other cultures, trigger certain reactions in the locals. In some respects the German and New Zealand cultures are similar. It starts with the greeting at. Similar to Germany, the handshake and a smile are common forms of greeting. Those who know each other better greet each other with a kiss on the cheek. With the Māori there is Hongiwhere the noses touch.

Similar to the USA, the New Zealanders greet each other with a friendly "How are you?“And do not expect a detailed report on the state of health or soul of the person asked. On the North Island, this greeting phrase is often "Kia Ora". Just like in Germany, courtesy and "Thank you"Or"Please"always good. European table conventions and consideration in everyday life are taken for granted by many in New Zealand.

Kiwis often speak quickly and with specific slang. For example, many questions end up Eh or Aye. If you don't understand something, just ask politely or ask to speak more slowly.

Here are a few so that you don't step into any cultural faux pas Behavioral tips for living in New Zealand:

Courtesy and kindnessShoving, scolding, bragging
Confidence and a positive attitudeAn overly direct or demanding kind
Ask if something is unclearTalking about personal topics like salary, childlessness, being single or weight
Punctuality and honestyFalse promises or exaggerations
Sociability and humorDiscrimination of any kind
In the event of invitations at home, the host is happy to receive a small souvenir, such as books or chocolate from home.Keep your street shoes on when entering a private house, and customers often have dirty shoes in front of shops
Māori are happy if they bring songs with them, as singing together has a community-building effect.Sitting on tables or pillows in the company of Māori, especially in holy places

V-Sign (offensive gesture in Ireland, Australia, South Africa and Great Britain)

Throwing litter on the streets as environmental protection is a big deal in New Zealand

Tipping is rather uncommon.

Smoking inside closed rooms or groups, there are designated areas for this