Born in London but raised in New Zealand, the half-Welsh Paul Janman is an Auckland writer and filmmaker. Early studies in history and philosophy and an interest in Buddhism and martial arts caused him years in Europe and Asia. Back in NZ, he entered into anthropology and street theatre before becoming bemused and inspired by Herakleitos and Andersonian Realism. After two years under ‘I. Futa Helu at ‘Atenisi Institute in Tonga, he made the film Tongan Ark – a series of paradoxes and an interventionist model of documentary-making that has both elated and disturbed audiences around the world.
- "Philosophical realism comes easily when you are surrounded by pigs and the daily work of subsistence cropping."
- "As he says in one of the more controversial parts of our film: ‘There are no taboo fields."
- "It turns out that the word also means to bathe and it is related to the word ‘au’au, which means scraping or unwrapping."
- "The school is producing many great students and it persists, of course, in the minds of hundreds of Pacific scholars, artists, ethical business people, activists and even clergymen around the world."
- "Political independence is also fairly easy to spot in Tonga, because power is so visible."
- "Denys considered this an essential part of a university education—to be close to the natural cycles and rhythms of life, as well as elevated ideas."
- "Unfortunately the creeping standardisation of the global accreditation system has jeopardised ‘Atenisi’s chances of continuing to do its own thing."
- "Hamilton notes how gentle the Tongan metaphors for thought seem to be, in contrast to the commonly brutal western notions of thinking as cutting, piercing or penetrating."
- "‘Atenisi has remained at the vanguard of Tongan education for more than 45 years."
- "In contrast with the emphasis of a world of measurable results, it is the relationship between knowledge and the community of knowers, as well as the natural world, that is as important as the utilitarian final products of knowledge."