The ‘Our Living Room’ trope is a central tenet for most Pacific families. In the living room, families connect, disconnect, and reconnect during the war and peace of lived lives and experiences. In the living room the walls are adorned with the images of intergenerational families, of loved ones and of times gone by.

The living room is a voyage of discovery – a record of living lives, of family members at home in the Islands or in the transnational spaces where they now sojourn, and of ancestors’ lives, all suspended in time. And yet, it contains the hidden threads of colonisation, christianity, capitalism, racism, and peaceful activism and Pacific empowerment in plain sight. ‘Our living room’ will always be a tangible reminder of our global experiences in our worlds and all that is important for generations of Pacific families to come.

The purpose of this workshop is to raise collective awareness of the history of Pacific activism both in our Pacific homelands and in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

The workshop specifically focuses on the activism of Auckland’s 1970s Polynesian Panthers. Central to the PPP’s philosophy today is the ‘three-point’ – a three point platform of peaceful resistance, Pacific empowerment and educating Aotearoa, New Zealand about persistent systemic racism. The workshop aims to support teachers in naming, negotiating and navigating racism in schools.

This workshop is a single day event on 23 February 2024 to be held at the Pā, University of Waikato.  It will be presented by members of the Polynesian Panthers Legacy Trust in association with the Centres of Asia-Pacific Excellence.