Akava'ine


Akava'ine

An akava'ine or 'akava'ine is a Cook Islands Māori word used to describe transgender or transsexual women in the Cook Islands.

It can also refer to women who have an inflated opinion of themselves, draw attention to themselves in ways that disrupt groupness, don't heed others advice, or who act in a self-serving or self-promoting way.[1]

Contents

Etymology

The term 'akava'ine is a prefix of "aka" (to be or to behave like) and "va'ine" (woman).[2]

Antonym: 'akatāne [3] - Act like a man, have manly qualities; be a tomboy.[4]

Other terms

Sometimes the word laelae is also used, typically when implying criticism or ridicule of feminine behaviour displayed by a man, for example being described as effeminate or homosexual.[5] Laelae is the colloquial Cook Islands term; the word tutuva'ine (meaning "like a woman") is used less frequently.[6] Homosexuality is illegal for males in the Cook Islands.[7]

History

Culturally, akava'ines have been around for centuries. And they've always been part of the family, part of the village, and part of the tribe. But when the missionaries came, things changed quite dramatically for everyone in the Pacific Islands, and the Cook Islands were no exception. In the 1800s they started bringing in homophobic and transphobic attitudes.[8]

References

  1. ^ Dancing from the heart: movement, gender, and Cook Islands globalization By Kalissa Alexeyeff p. 88 Google Books
  2. ^ Cook Islands Maori dictionary By Jasper Buse, Raututi Taringa p. 51 Google Books
  3. ^ Dancing from the heart: movement, gender, and Cook Islands globalization By Kalissa Alexeyeff p. 89 Google Books
  4. ^ Cook Islands Maori dictionary By Jasper Buse, Raututi Taringa p. 43 Google Books
  5. ^ Dancing from the heart: movement, gender, and Cook Islands globalization By Kalissa Alexeyeff Google Books
  6. ^ Dancing from the heart: movement, gender, and Cook Islands globalization By Kalissa Alexeyeff pg 179 Google Books
  7. ^ LGBT World legal wrap up survey International Lesbian and Gay Association (2006) p. 4
  8. ^ Supporting our sisters in the Pacific By Matt Akersten - 12th August 2008

Bibliography

  • Dancing from the heart: movement, gender, and Cook Islands globalization. By Kalissa Alexeyeff, University of Hawaii Press (2009)
  • Cook Islands Maori dictionary. By Jasper Buse with Raututi Taringa, edited by Bruce Biggs and Rangi Moeka'a, published by The Ministry of Education, Government of the Cook Islands (1995)

See also

External links



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