“‘Well, I didn’t come to play. This is something I have to keep going and doing.’ Because then who’s gonna look after the people who are coming after me? If I go, then someone else has to do this whole road again. And that sucks. So as long as I can, I’ll hold the line, and talk to people, and say all sorts of inappropriate things about the university, and challenge the space, because it’s not a sacred space. It’s not a holy space. It’s an institution. It’s a company. It’s not gonna care for us, in the way that our family or our culture is gonna care for us…. … So, we’re allowed to challenge – and actually we’re probably remiss if we don’t – as Pacific women try to fit in a non-Pacific, and somewhat non-women, world of academia” – Talanoa 10
As I come to the end of writing my dissertation and I have to sit and think about what am I trying to say I keep coming back to this quote. This quote embodies my dissertation – Pacific women did not come to play, we engage in higher education for our communities. We continue within a system that was not designed for us because we are thinking about those who come after us. We know that our communities and families have our back and in return we challenge institutions to do better and be better.
Hopefully soon I will have so much more to say about this.