HAINAMANA is a first linguistic encounter with Asia from an indigenous perspective. A transliteration of an English denomination –Chinaman – and operating at a third remove from what Chinese and East Asian migrants would call themselves, HAINAMANA points to a moment in Aotearoa’s recent colonial history, and to the often uneasy relations between tangata whenua and tauiwi.
With broad allegiances, HAINAMANA is committed to fostering contemporary Asian New Zealand arts and cultural discourse. With a view towards subjectivity and personal narratives, regional specificity, linguistic difference, and the multifarious and rapidly changing dimensions of contemporary New Zealand society, HAINAMANA also seeks to ask pertinent questions around issues of identity. It is at best an indication of emergent themes rather than resolutions, never a definitive authority on Asian cultural practice, and acknowledges social agitation as its primary function.