What is the theme of the story "A Way of Talking" by Patricia Grace?

One theme in the story "A Way of Talking" by Patricia Grace is cultural identity. Other themes include the importance of family and the impacts of colonialism.

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There are several themes in "A Way of Talking ," but one of the most blatant is the theme of racial and cultural pride in the wake of colonialism. The theme, while very common among works of this type, takes on a unique perspective. The character with the strength...

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There are several themes in "A Way of Talking," but one of the most blatant is the theme of racial and cultural pride in the wake of colonialism. The theme, while very common among works of this type, takes on a unique perspective. The character with the strength and "thick hide" to stand up for herself is not the protagonist but rather her older sister. Compared to her sister, Rose, Hera is far more non-confrontational and passive, and she does not take Jane's comments to heart. In fact, she is quite embarrassed when Rose speaks up for her people, especially considering that Hera does not believe that Jane meant any harm.

What Rose understands that Hera does not, however, is that the colonial machine's dearest foundation is that of indifference or ignorance, and the fact that Jane called the group of people "Maoris" rather than by any proper name proves that she is, whether she knows it or not, complicit in the colonial agenda. Hera soon realizes that the qualities within herself that she once praised as prudence and levelheadedness were actually meekness, and she promises to herself that she will never again simply keep quiet in the wake of aggressive attitudes, no matter how small.

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“A Way of Talking” is a short story written by Patricia Grace. It tells the story of Hera, who is eagerly awaiting her wedding, and her sister Rose, who returns home from studying at university in Auckland to take part in the wedding.

Hera and Rose are both Maori. The theme of cultural identity is explored throughout the narrative.

When Rose first returns home from university, her family is initially concerned that she may have given up her Maori cultural identity. Those concerns are quickly quelled once she makes them laugh with her “way of talking.” Even though she has entered a new environment with different cultures, Rose has maintained her identity. Her family loves her for that.

Shortly after Rose’s return, the sisters visit Jane Frazer, the local seamstress. Jane is defined as a “Pakeha,” which is a disparaging term for those of European ancestry.

In this short story, individuals are defined first by their culture. Their interactions are dictated by how their broader cultures interact. When the Maoris spend time together, they are happy and joyful. But when Rose interacts with Jane, Hera can tell the situation is a tinderbox. When Jane makes a disparaging comment against other Maoris, Rose immediately stands up for the unknown Maoris. She feels her identity as a Maori is also under attack.

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Resistance to racism is a theme that can be found throughout the story "A Way of Talking" by Patricia Grace. The story is set in Aotearoa, (known as New Zealand by the European settlers) and is narrated by a Maori woman, Hera, who is soon to be married. When her older and bold sister, Rose, returns home for the wedding preparations, Hera is initially embarrassed by her sister's refusal to accept racist remarks by whites settlers.

After an exchange in which Rose challenges a racist remark by the white dressmaker, Hera is initially upset and believes that Rose has embarrassed herself and her family. However, Hera soon realizes that Rose is actually refusing to accept discriminatory treatment against her and her people, and Hera comes to admire this strength. The story uplifts a strong indigenous woman who refuses to walk through the world without directly challenging the racism that she and her fellow Maori people are faced with.

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Family is another important theme in the story. Here, the family acts as a tight cultural unit, protecting its members from the harshness of the outside world. Rose's family is loving and strong; the relationships between Rose and Hera, and between the two sisters and their parents, really couldn't be any better. Their home is filled with warmth, laughter, and the delicious aroma of mother's "big Maori bread."

Beneath the idyllic surface, however, there are complexities in the dynamics of family life. After Rose chastises Jane for her prejudiced remark, Hera is forced to reflect on the uncomfortable fact that her family's always relied upon Rose to speak up for them. Instead of challenging prejudice together, Hera and her family have inadvertently put the burden onto Rose's shoulders.

Nevertheless, there are signs of hope, as Hera resolves to be more like her courageous sister and stand up for what she believes in. Although Hera comes from a strong, supportive family, her upbringing has not prepared her adequately for dealing with the prejudices of white New Zealand society. And if she is to challenge those prejudices, she'll need to stand up for herself, her family, and her people, just like her sister, Rose.

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In her story, A Way of Talking, Patricia Grace describes the relationship between indigenous Maoris and new settlers from Europe and Australia in 19th century New Zealand. It focuses on the theme of cultural and personal identity.

Jane Frazer, a Pakeha (white) dressmaker, demonstrates an attitude of cultural prejudice. In conversation with a visiting Maori student Rose and her sister Hera, Jane mentions that her husband is picking up "the Maori" to help him. She goes on to admit that she does not know her workers by their names. She does not consider the Maori men as individuals with identities. She shows a complete disregard for the rich Maori culture and heritage. The outspoken Rose does not let the matter drop, and confronts the dressmaker. Hera is initially embarrassed by her sister's confrontational attitude but eventually realizes her pain. She acquires a new understanding of her position in the family and the community.

The story highlights the fact that people support a system of oppression when they benefit from it.

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Check the link below for information about the theme of the story, which primarily concerns the racial conflict in New Zealand.  Good luck!

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