Funding boost for Maori legal dictionary
A senior lecturer in law at Victoria University has attracted more than $600,00 worth of funding aimed at producing New Zealand’s first legal Maori dictionary.
Mamari Stephens said much of New Zealand’s bilingual legal past is hidden in the Alexander Turnbull Library in Wellington. She said her research would involve accessing and gathering texts in Maori about any legal topic from the past 200 years, analysing the frequency of terms and words.The second stage involved seeing where gaps existed and what new terms might need to be made. A third stage was the compilation of the dictionary and putting it together in a useable form.
Ms Stephens has received a $5000 New Researcher’s Fund grant, $20,000 from the University Research Fund, $55,000 from the Contestable Fund and $593,000 from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology.”The aim of the project is to have work that is user friendly and helpful to those working in areas involving Maori language,” Ms Stephens said.