Anti-Colonial Resistance and Nationalism in Melanesia

March 6, 3:00pm - 5:00pm
Mānoa Campus, 3121/3125 John A Burns Hall Add to Calendar


Presentations by David Akin and David Chappell followed by book launch

Sponsored by the Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center; Center for Pacific Islands Studies, Department of History, Department of Anthropology, and University of Hawaiʻi Press

Maasina Rule beyond Recognition: A Short History of Scholarly Distortion by David Akin While researching his recent book, Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom, about the postwar Maasina Rule movement in the Solomon Islands, David Akin was struck by the astonishing amount of misinformation that historians, anthropologists, and others have published about the movement over the past sixty-plus years. His presentation will highlight key themes in this history of errors and trace their origins to archival obstruction, purposeful misrepresentation, and theoretical muddles. David Akin is an anthropologist and independent scholar living in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He is Managing Editor of the journal Comparative Studies in Society and History and teaches at the University of Michigan. He has just published Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom (2013) and is writing another book about changing women’s taboos in Kwaio.

The Kanak Awakening: The Syncretic Anticolonialism of New Caledonia’s Red Scarves by David Chappell France annexed New Caledonia in 1853. A century later Paris granted autonomy to the territory but then began to withdraw self-governing powers in order to keep control of local mining. That political regression, plus massive new immigration because of a nickel boom, led local students who had studied in France to form a multiethnic independence movement in 1969 called the Foulards Rouges (Red Scarves), which grew into a Kanak nationalist uprising by the 1980s. This talk will examine the syncretism between indigenous cultural nationalism and leftist anticolonialism. David Chappell is Associate Professor of Pacific Islands History at UH Mānoa and has just published The Kanak Awakening: The Rise of Nationalism in New Caledonia (2013).

A light reception and book signing will follow the presentations. Latest PIMS volumes Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom and The Kanak Awakening: The Rise of Nationalism in New Caledonia will be available at 20% off list price.

Ticket Information
Free and open to the public

Event Sponsor
Center for Pacific Islands Studies, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Katherine Higgins, 808-956-2658,

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