Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Whale Rider

Koro seems to let his traditional values get in the way of his connection with family. It isn’t until he puts aside his stubborn conception of “men are the only leaders” that he is able to truly appreciate and cherish the love that he has for the women in his life. Some beliefs must change in order to keep tradition alive and allow society to flourish. In Koro’s case, he has to accept that for the first time a female is destined to lead the Mahori tribe. After a series of events, Koro is able to finally see what has been in front of him all along and realize that family is what’s most important.
Throughout Kahu’s life, no matter how cruel or cold her grandfather was to her, she admired and loved him unconditionally. She continues to prove that she is the type of leader her grandfather is looking for, but the fact that she is a female keeps him from seeing that what he is looking for is within his own family. Koro knew he was the key to passing on the tradition and was not willing to make any exceptions, therefore allowing traditional beliefs to get in the way of his connection with family.
When Whangara needs help with the whales, Koro insists that the men are the only ones allowed to help because they have to be one in body mind and spirit; but if they must work together as “one” shouldn’t the women be able to help? When Nanny Flowers eventually shows Koro the stone that Kahu had fetched, he realizes that she has a gift and the capability of a leader that he has been searching for since the day she was born. When Nanny Flowers and Kahu’s life is in danger, he admits that he is to blame for all of the harm done and is grateful that they are safe. Now that he can put aside the tradition of men being the only possible leaders, Koro is able to appreciate and cherish the love he has for his family and tribe.

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