A countries national identity is the way a nation perceives itself in relation to the world. Three of New Zealand’s main national identity features are the migrant society, the sporting nation and the arts culture. Each of these features are special to New Zealand’s society in different ways. By the end of this essay you will see why these are important to the identity of New Zealand.
The migrant society of New Zealand is an important identity feature. New Zealand is made up of many diverse ethnic groups. They come to New Zealand from many different countries for example, Asia, Pacific Islands, European countries, Middle East etc. Migrants are important to New Zealand for various reasons. They bring different cultures, which help new Zealand people experience different ways of life. They also bring knowledge, different types of food and business, which help with the economy of New Zealand. For example generations of New Zealand people now grow up and experience new and diverse cultures everyday because New Zealand is now such a multicultural country.
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Migrants continue to migrate to New Zealand because of our clean and green environment and our loyal and respectful reputation. This causes our ethnic diversity to keep on growing and is becoming a greater part of New Zealand’s identity everyday.
New Zealand is known to be a very sporty nation and is defiantly a main aspect of our nation identity. We have many different sports that we are well known for such as Rugby, Netball, Sailing, Hockey, Basketball and Soccer. However our national sport that we are well known for is Rugby. Our recognised Rugby team ‘ The All Blacks’ is one of the top teams in the world. In 1906 the All Black returned from a worldwide tour with a triumphant 31 out of 32 wins. And over the last few years they have been in the final or semi-finals for the world cup. Being such a small country, an achievement as great as this is definitely something to be proud of. Other than Rugby New Zealand does well in other various sports for example in 1953 50 years ago from now Sir Edmond Hillary (now a well known New Zealander throughout the world) was the first man in history to conquer the highest mountain in the world Mt Everest.
Another sporting event that New Zealand takes pride in is The America’s Cup which in 1997 and in 2000 we victoriously won. Overall New Zealand sporting is very important to our identity more than other aspects because we are a very competitive country and are determined to always do our best also because of our size we strive to be recognized by the rest of the world. We do this best through our sport.
Another main aspect of our national identity is our art culture. Many of our artists show deep subliminal messages about the cultures of New Zealand, through different types of art. Behind each piece of New Zealand art work there is a story to be told due to most artists using the lands natural sculpture as a base to their artwork since that most New Zealand artists are very in touch with our beautiful innate surroundings. For example as you can see in the picture below by Robyn Kahukiwa he uses significant symbols of New Zealand Tapu (sacred) Objects such as the moko (Maori face tattoo) the greenstone tiki, the flax piupiu (traditional Maori skirt), the feather cloak that only Maori chief wore and the New Zealand flag in the background.
Robyn Kahukiwa – Woman In Piupiu
And this is only one of the many artists of New Zealand. The art culture is so important to the identity of New Zealand because it is what carries on the legends of New Zealand and makes us all remember our ancestry and our beautiful country.
In conclusion New Zealand has many identities but
– The migrant society
– The sporting Nation
– The art culture
are the ones that stand out as the most important national identity aspects. These are the most important because our main qualities as New Zealanders are our accepting, competitive and creative personalities and these compliment our 3 most important national identity features.
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