Saturday, August 25, 2012

A quiz for Atuanui

At the beginning of this month Atuanui Press published its first book, a selection of the late Futa Helu's essays about Tongan poetry, at the premiere of Tongan Ark, Paul Janman's cinematic tribute to Helu.

Atuanui is an offshoot of Titus Books, the imprint which has, under the leadership of the genial but determined Brett Cross, given New Zealand and the world nearly thirty stylish volumes over the past seven years. Where Titus has published contemporary novels, short stories, poetry, and art, Atuanui is intended to explore the literary treasures of the past, and to bring deserving works of both non-fiction and fiction back into print. Brett is particularly interested in tracking down unjustly neglected writing that deals with New Zealand and the Pacific.

When Brett Cross made a rare journey south from his farmlet on the shores of the Kaipara harbour to the decadent city of Auckland last weekend, he proudly informed me that he'd just set up a website for Atuanui, and explained that punters could shop there for both Futa Helu's new book and a series of other volumes from small presses, like Helu's 1996 monograph on the pre-Socratic philosopher Heraclitus and Michelle Leggott's Pania Press chapbook Northland. I suggested that we celebrate the new site by having a competition at this blog.  Here, then, are ten questions about the literature and history of New Zealand and the Pacific. I hope they are vaguely related to the sort of subject matter than Atuanui Press hopes to deal in.

The first person to leave seven correct answers to these questions in the comments thread will win a copy of Futa Helu's On Tongan Poetry as well as a pack of books from Titus.

1. In 1972 a group of right-wing Americans landed on the previously uninhabited atoll of Minerva and announced that they were setting up a libertarian, no-tax state there. They were soon chased away by the navy of which nation?

a) Australia
b) United States
c) New Zealand
d) Tonga

2. Which sport became popular amongst Samoa's pro-independence Mau movement in the 1930s, because of the opportunities it presented for clandestine political meetings away from the attention of the colonial New Zealand police?

a) cricket
b) rugby
c) curling
d) bowls

3. In 1995 the distinguished anthropologist and satirist Epeli Hau'ofa published a novel called Kisses in the Nederends with University of Hawaii Press. Was Hau'ofa's book about:

a) a romantic sojourn in the Netherlands
b) the hierarchical nature of the world of academic anthropology, and the tendency of those lower in the hierarchy to flatter those higher up
c) the hierarchical nature of Tongan society, and the tendency of those lower in the hierarchy to flatter those higher up
d) a bad case of hemorrhoids

4. After dancing and singing at the Auckland and Wellington screenings of Tongan Ark and on national television, the members of the 'Atenisi Foundation for the Performing Arts were about to head home to Nuku'alofa on the 13th of this month, when they learned that all flights to and from Tonga had been cancelled. What was the cause of this temporary cessation in services, which forced hundred of passengers to rebook their flights?

a) high winds
b) drifting ash from the eruption of White Island
c) drifting ash from the eruption of Mt Tongariro
d) a fire lit to flush a wild boar out of the bush on the Tongan island of Tofua

5. In the 1980s and '90s Maurice Shadbolt won a lot of attention by publishing three novels about the New Zealand Wars. But Shadbolt was not the first novelist to make the nineteenth century wars in Taranaki, the Waikato, and the Ureweras into a trilogy. Who was Shadbolt's undeservedly neglected predecessor?

6. At the end of 2006 Frank Bainimarama installed himself as leader of Fiji with a military coup, dissolving the country's elected government. Since then there have been frequent calls from various foreign governments for Bainimarama to stand down and allow democratic elections in his country. On one island in Fiji, though, people have been able to vote freely in repeated national elections, despite the coup of 2006. Who are these people, and what is the name of their island?

7. At the end of the 1860s Te Kooti's armed uprising against the government in Wellington alarmed many colonial politicians and newspapermen, who worried that the withdrawal of British imperial troops from the country earlier in the decade meant that Pakeha might find themselves unable to win a new war against Maori. In late 1868 and early 1869 numerous papers and some politicians called for the importation of a 'fighting' foreign 'race' which would, in return for being allowed to settle in New Zealand, defeat Te Kooti and other Maori rebels on the battlefield. Who were these supposedly warlike foreigners?

a) the Sikhs
b) the Prussians
c) the Gurkhas
d) the Americans

8. Which of these Pacific islands is almost exactly the same size and shape as New York's Manhattan Island?

a) Great Barrier
b) Rapa Iti
c) Rapa Nui
d) 'Eua

9. Which of these indigenous languages was officially approved for use in the services of the Presbyterian church of New Zealand until the 1930s?

a) Maori
b) Bislama
c) Gaelic
d) Manx

10. Which of these Pacific political leaders is revered as a great poet in the country he or she ruled?

a) Robert Muldoon
b) Sitiveni Rabuka
c) Robert Rex
d) Salote Tupou III

Footnote: Brett comments: those questions are geeky. Who are you picking to answer correctly first?

[Posted by Maps/Scott]


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am quizzical

10:35 am  
Anonymous jj said...

buggered it i know...

5:51 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

I am sure these "catch" words are stopping a lot of people commenting. Older people such as I will have great difficulty so I set the print larger by using "view" (to read anything on the net). If my eyes get worse I may get rid of my computer altogether (it is a luxury really isn't it?. And as time goes by I suspect I will have to use large print books or a good "kindle" that enlarges the print.

6:29 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

Cant answer any of these but I'll try to go via Wiki.

6:30 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, doing this right now.
Rule 1: Post the rules.

Rule 2: Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post and then make 10 new ones.

Rule 3: Tag 10 people and link them to your post.

Rule 4: Let them know you’ve tagged them

1. What would you do if you could fly for a day?

I would fly the Netherlands, then from there, I would visit my friend in Sweden.

2. What foods are you not particularly fond of?

Cooked Seafood, Spinach, Brussel sprouts, most kinds of cheese.

3. What is one of your biggest fears?

I have a big fear of heights.

4. What do you find attractive about a person?

Their personality.

5. A song you could listen to all day?

The Suspender Man - Steam Powered Giraffe

6. Favourite time of the day?


7. If you only had so long to live, how would you spend your time?

Well, I would start out by backpacking in Europe for a while, then I would spend the rest of my time with my best friends. <3

8. How was your day?

Actually, pretty damn good.

9. Do you major in anything?

Biology, then mastering in Forensic Pathology.

10. What’s some of your favourite books?

The Metroid Prime series, LoZ: Majora’s mask and Ocarina of Time, Animal Crossing, Killzone, Bioshock, Half Life, Portal.

6:45 pm  
Blogger baruk said...

1. d) Tonga
2. c) curling
3. d) a bad case of hemorrhoids
4. d) a fire lit to flush a wild boar out of the bush on the Tongan island of Tofua
5. Errol Brathwaite
6. Rotumans, Rotuma
7. c) the Gurkhas, though the Sikhs seem to have been suggested too?
8. d) 'Eua seems the closest in size, though I am not so sure about shape.
9. c) Gaelic
10. d) Salote Tupou III

6:47 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


6:48 pm  
Blogger Richard said...

1. d

2. a

3. c

4. d

5. James Cowan

6. Rotuman Islanders on Rotuma Island

7. b

8. d (by elimination)

9. a

10. d

I did these. I knew more than I thought I did

7:16 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1st is TONGA

but I know twenty more harder ones...

7:24 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


oh fuck

2:54 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

number 7...what about the Aussies???

2:58 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about some clues.

10:54 am  
Anonymous Christel said...

1) a Tonga
2) a cricket (mainly by women to raise funds for the may)
3) c
4) c drifting ash from the eruptions of Mt. Tongariro
5) Errol Brathwaite
6) Rotumans, Rotuma
7) a Sikhs
8) d 'Eua
9) c Gaelic
10) d Salote Tupou III

1:27 pm  
Anonymous christel said...

sorry about the typo in 2a cricket ( mainly by women to raise funds for the Mau.

1:32 pm  
Anonymous Jeremiah said...

Sorry I couldn't find the excerpt "There is no war here" in the new, Oceania-themed issue of brief. I am interested in the German occupation of Samoa.

2:19 am  

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