Presenting the history of the inhabitants of the Pacific Islands from first colonization until the spread of European colonial rule in the later 19th century, this volume focuses specifically on Pacific Islander-European interactions from the perspective of Pacific Islanders themselves. A number of recorded traditions are reproduced as well as articles by Pacific Island scholars working within the academy. The nature of Pacific History as a sub-discipline is presented through a sample of key articles from the 1890s until the present that represent the historical evolution of the field and its multidisciplinary nature. The volume reflects on how the indigenous inhabitants of the Pacific Islands have a history as dynamic and complex as that of literate societies, and one that is more retrievable through multidisciplinary approaches than often realized.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; Part 1 Exploring and Colonising Oceania: The birth of new lands, after the creation of Havai'i (Raiatea), Teuira Henry; 'Expanding' the target in indigenous navigation, David Lewis; Voyaging, Ben R. Finney; The colonisation of the Pacific plate: chronological, navigational and social issues, Geoffrey Irwin. Part 2 Historical Dynamics of Island Societies: Ecological Adaptations: Man's role in modifying tropical and sub-tropical Polynesian ecosystems, P.V. Kirch; Man and the sea in early Tahiti: a maritime economy through European eyes, Gordon R. Lewthwaite; The Ipomoean revolution revisited: society and the sweet potato in the upper Waghi valley, Jack Golson; Social and Political Evolution: The value of traditions in Polynesian research, Te Rangi Hiroa (P.H. Buck); Understanding Polynesian traditional history, Niel Gunson; Oral traditions among the Binandere: problems of method in a Melanesian society, John D. Waiko; Status rivalry and cultural evolution in Polynesia, Irving Goldman; Chimbu tribes: political organization in the Eastern highlands of New Guinea, Paula Brown; Regional Histories: The war of Tonga and Samoa and the origin of the name Malietoa, Samuel Ella (trans.); Exchange patterns in goods and spouses: Fiji, Tonga and Samoa, Adrienne L. Kaeppler; Kula: the circulating exchange of valuables in the archipelagoes of Eastern New Guinea, B. Malinowski; The place of Ulithi in the Yap empire, William A. Lessa; Yapese politics, Yapese money and the Sawei tribute network before World War I, M.L. Berg. Part 3 Culture Contact: The stranger-king or Dumézil among the Fijians, Marshall Sahlins; Institutions of violence in the Marquesas, Greg Dening; European-Polynesian encounters: a critique of the Pearson thesis, I.C. Campbell; From conversion to conquest: the early Spanish mission in the Marianas, Francis X. Hezel. Part 4 Responses to Pre-Colonial European Influences: The sandalwood trade in Melanesian economics, 1841-65, Dorothy Shineber
Paul D'Arcy is Fellow, Division of Pacific and Asian History, Research School of Pacific & Asian Studies, Australian National University.