When possible, Te Tumu always likes to acknowledge our students’ completions of their PhDs with a morning or afternoon tea. Today was our opportunity to celebrate Raphael Richter-Gravier, who graduated last December. Given that his thesis investigated Polynesian bird narratives, it was fitting that Te Tumu gifted Raphael with a 2-dimensional metallic sculpture of a kārearea (NZ falcon). His supervisor, Professor Michael Reilly, spoke about what a wonderful doctoral student Raphael was, one whose writing was stimulating and thoughtful, and didn’t need too much revising. Raphael also noted that his friend, Manu Berry has created a number of woodcuts inspired by the bird narratives, which are currently on exhibition at PC Gallery in Port Chalmers. Raphael has been with Te Tumu for a number of years, as a student and tutor in Māori Studies. He seems to have a lot of activities on his plate at present (including teaching French), and we wish him well for the future.
Manu narratives of Polynesia
Te Tumu would like to congratulate Raphael Richter-Gravier, one of our stellar postgraduate students, for having completed all the post-examination formalities for his PhD on “Manu narratives of Polynesia: a comparative study of birds in 300 traditional Polynesian stories“.
Raphael was supervised by Professor Michael Reilly and Dr Michelle Schaaf from Te Tumu, and through a co-tutelle arrangement, also by Professor Bruno Saura from the University of French Polynesia. Raphael’s research is comprehensive and in-depth, looking at a wide range of bird stories on a number of themes from all around Polynesia, including Aotearoa.
If you are interested in delving into some of the stories, or reading Raphael’s thesis in its entirity, it is now available online on the university’s OUR Archive. Click here to access it.
Raphael will be graduating in December, and is planning to publish from his research.