Indigeneity, media and cultural globalization: The Case of Mataku, or the Maori X-Files

Kevin Glynn*, A. F. Tyson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


This article analyzes Mataku, a New Zealand television anthology program created with an eye toward the global media market and, according to its producers, the first such TV drama ever to be 'written, directed and produced entirely by Maori'. Mataku has emerged partly through the economic dynamics of globalization and partly as a consequence of government policies, institutional arrangements and funding mechanisms established in New Zealand in response to threats posed by neoliberalism. Mataku revisits traditional Maori narratives that have circulated orally for generations and repackages those stories within generic frameworks associated with the global resurgence of supernaturalism in television. The program therefore embodies aspects of both cultural globality and cultural hybridity on several levels. Its emphasis on the multiplicity of modalities through which 'the old ways' assert their significance within contemporary life creates a space for complex postcolonial negotiations between past and present, disenchantment and alterity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-224
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Cultural Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2007
Externally publishedYes


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