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Reading Ezra 9-10 Tu'a-wise: Rethinking Biblical Interpretation in Oceania
Nasili Vaka'uta
Publication Date
November 2011


An alternative approach to biblical interpretation from a Tongan standpoint

In Reading Ezra 9–10 Tu'a-wise, Nasili Vaka'uta establishes a theoretical framework for reading that is informed by Tongan cultural perspectives—in this case the “eye-/I-s” of a Tongan commoner (tu’a). She applies a methodology for analysis of biblical texts based on the established theoretical framework and tests the methodology on Ezra 9–10. The book emphasizes contextualizing the task of biblical interpretation (using contextual or specifically indigenous categories of analysis) rather than contextualizing the Bible (applying the insights from one’s reading to one’s situation).


  • Oceanic way of reading the Biblical texts
  • Critical engagement with contextual biblical interpretation
  • Practice-based interpretation

Nasili Vaka’uta is Lecturer in Biblical Studies (Hebrew Bible/Old Testament) at Trinity Methodist Theological College and the School of Theology, University of Auckland. He is an ordained minister of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga in full connection with the Methodist Church of New Zealand.

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