In order to prepare myself for a glorious sports event this weekend, I've bought and read a book about Māori. If my sources are to be believed, Māori is relatively close to other Polynesian languages, so if you are a specialist in these or in other Austronesian languages, you may be able to answer my question.
This book was quite disappointing: it is clearly very far from comprehensive (which is OK, because it isn't sold as such) and, while it insists on how far from European languages the Māori is, it somehow remains stuck in IE grammatical categories...
One aspect of the grammar where this failure was particularly frustrating is the verb question: the author explains that the verb has no form expressing person, number, gender or tense (this role is assumed by a rich system of particles), that many things can be expressed with verbless sentences, and that a same word often serves as both noun and verb (e.g. mahi translates as the noun work and the verb to work). In my opinion, all these things are clues that maybe the noun/verb opposition doesn't make much sense in that context.
I'm interested in all kinds of generalisations of this question, but I'll ask a separate question for that.