know what to make of New Zealand.

As an anthropology student I'm constantly forced to question the existence of culture. Is there such thing? How many 'cultures' make up a 'culture'? Who decides how to define a 'culture'? Do we now choose/buy/inherit culture? ...the questions are so integral to understanding society, yet discussions about it are sadly so often quilted in esoteric and flowery nonsense. In lectures this usually results in the palm-sweating panic of waking to the sound of 'Ace' Taxi's receptionist, upon accidentally falling asleep on the lecture desk in front and, unfortunately for both the confused northern voice at the end of the line, my phone- imprinted face, and not to mention the poor sleeping lions referee stood mumbling in front of us, we're all left thinking 'what?'.

But in my selection of my favourite photos of New Zealand, I wondered what it was that I had decided made them symbols of culture. Note a distinct lack of rugby balls, hiking boots or sheep. In any representation, one's own culture is inevitably imbricated, and I feel these photos reflect my confused position about what culture is. Natural instinct selected four New Zealand symbols. Home, volleyball enthusiasts so keen they're playing at 8am on a Sunday morning, a church fete styled bar (the type where it's not cool to smile), and the sun setting at the end of a long road trip.

Photos by Alice Harbourne

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