Stefhan Brown


YOB: 1972
Experience: Surfing, Surf Life Saving
Regions: Otago, South Island, North Island
Interview Location: Dunedin, NZ
Interview Date: 02 December 2015
Post Date: 14 September 2017; Copyright © 2017 Stefhan Brown and Steve Crawford

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CRAWFORD: How much Māori culture and knowledge has affected your thinking about the marine ecosystem general?

BROWN: Very low. 

CRAWFORD: What about Science. How much has Science culture and knowledge affected your understanding?

BROWN: Very high.

CRAWFORD: You are one of the few people to score that as 'Very High.' Why do you say that?

BROWN: Because I wanted to know what made the waves work. So all of my education, from as soon as I got into surfing, I changed all my classes so I could learn about it. I’m relatively good at math.

CRAWFORD: Ok. On top of that, that type of Western critical thinking, that type of science-based approach to things ... is it the case that you've also learned a lot from Science about the ecosystem, the plants and the animals?

BROWN: Well, I suppose it’s indirect but I mean, like you know where the Seal colonies are. It’s always because there’s a headland just jutting out that was suitable for them to live on. But just by that very nature, there is usually sort of a hook in it, so every peninsula has some sort of hook. Every land mass is shaped by the ocean and the swells.

CRAWFORD: But what I’m get at is ... the things that are shaping the physical nature of surf conditions, are the same things that drive the ecosystem.

BROWN: Correct.

CRAWFORD: But would it be fair to say that Science has influenced more of your understanding about physical processes - more than the biological or ecological processes?


Copyright © 2017 Stefhan Brown and Steve Crawford