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Cultural Identities: Pacific and American Perspectives

Pacific Islands Studies 690

Spring 1994



Instructors:




Vilsoni Hereniko                     Tel: 808-956-2659



Center for Pacific Islands Studies   Fax: 808-956-7053



University of Hawai`i at Manoa       



1890 East-West Road, Moore 215



Honolulu, HI 96822







Geoffrey M. White                    Tel: 808-944-7343



East-West Center                     Fax: 808-944-7070



1601 East-West Road                  Email: white@hawaii.edu



Honolulu, HI 96848-1601




Course Description:

This one-semester course will offer a comparative approach to the study of cultural identities--as they are conceived and debated in the United States and Pacific Island societies. The course will explore constructions of culture and identity in a variety of contexts, including literature, film, and public performance. The strategy of the course will be to work from the particular to the general, scrutinizing specific forms of identity to understand their meaning and power in contemporary society.

The course is organized in four parts: First, discussion of relevant theoretical terms--identity, self, ethnicity, gender, nation; Second, consideration of contemporary formulations of identity in the Pacific Islands region; Third, a review of debates about culture, identity and multiculturalism in America; and Fourth, comparative discussion with particular reference to the productions of cultural identity in Hawaii.

Aims: at the end of the course, students should be able to:

- understand concepts of culture and identity and the basis for their contentious nature in contemporary society

- compare and contrast particular forms and uses of cultural identity in America and the Pacific Islands

- critically examine the forms of representation (texts, films, performances) and historical forces that shape American and Pacific Islands identities today.

- evaluate and justify particular definitions and expressions of cultural identity, including the student's own assumptions about such matters.

Requirements:

Requirements for the course include class participation (20%), seminar presentations (40%) that will serve as a forum for dialogue between the student and instructors for critiquing course materials, and a course paper (40%) that may either take the form of a case study analyzing a relevant performance, exhibition, film, or text, or a critical review of readings.

Required Texts (available in bookstore and on reserve, EWC & UH):

James Clifford, The Predicament of Culture

R. Ferguson et al., ed., Out There: Marginalization and Contemporary Culture

Epeli Hau'ofa, Tales of the Tikongs

Toni Morrison, ed. Race-ing Justice, En-gendering Power

Karen Nero, ed. The Arts and Politics (Special Issue, Pacific Studies)

Geoffrey White, Identity Through History

Course Outline:

INTRODUCTION AND CULTURAL THEORY

Week 1 (12 January) : Introduction

Week 2 (19 January): Identity Theory

Week 3 (26 January): Politics of Culture and Representation

PACIFIC IDENTITIES

Week 4 (2 February) : Culture and Identity in the Pacific

Week 5 (9 February) : Ethnography

Week 6 (16 February) : Travel Writing and Fiction

Week 7 (23 February) : Film and Video

Week 8 (2 March) : Art, Museums and Public Places

Week 9 (9 March) : Performance: Dance and Theater

RACE, ETHNICITY AND U.S. CULTURAL POLITICS

Week 10 (16 March) Politics of Identity, American Style

Week 11 (30 March) The Hill/Thomas Debate

Week 12 (6 April) Literature/Film/Performance

Week 13 (13 April) Art and Exhibition

PRODUCTIONS OF CULTURE IN HAWAII

Week 14 (20 April) Identity and Tourism in "Paradise"

Week 15 (27 April) : Literature and Film

Week 16 (4 May) : Music, Performance and Concluding Reflections

READINGS

Week 1 (12 January) : Introduction

Part I: Administration and Course Requirements

Part II: (see reserve readings, EWC reading room, Burns Hall fourth floor)

Keesing, Roger
1989 Creating the Past: Custom and Identity in the Contemporary Pacific. In The Contemporary Pacific: A Journal of Pacific Affairs. Vol 1 (1,2): 19-39.

Trask, Haunani-Kay
1991 Natives and Anthropologists: The Colonial Struggle. In The Contemporary Pacific: A Journal of Pacific Affairs. Vol.3: 159-167.

Week 2 (19 January): Identity Theory

Part I:

Geertz, Clifford
1975 The Integrative Revolution: Primordial Sentiments and Civil Politics in the New States (selections). In The Interpretation of Cultures. New York: Basic Books. Pp. 255-279 & 306-310.

Hall, Stuart
1990 Cultural Identity and Diaspora. In Identity: Community, Culture, Difference. J. Rutherford, ed. London: Lawrence & Wishart. Pp. 222-237

Part II

Clifford, James
1988 Introduction: The Pure Products Go Crazy. In The Predicament of Culture. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Pp. 1-17.

Ferguson, Russell
1990 Introduction: Invisible Center. In Out There: Marginalization and Contemporary Cultures. Ferguson et al. eds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Pp. 9-14.

hooks, bell
1990 marginality as site of resistance. In Ferguson et al. eds. Pp. 341-343.

Week 3 (26 January): Politics of Culture and Representation

Part I:

West, Cornel
1990 The New Cultural Politics of Difference. In Out There: Marginalization and Contemporary Cultures. Ferguson et al. eds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Pp. 19-36.

Lorde, Audre
1990 Age, Race, Class, and Sex: Women Redefining Difference. In Out There: Marginalization and Contemporary Cultures. Ferguson et al. eds. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Pp. 281-287.

Rosaldo, Renato
1993 Cultural Citizenship in San Jose, California. Paper read at meeting of the American Anthropological Association. Washington, D.C. November 1993.

Part II:

Wendt, Albert
1987 Novelists and Historians and the Art of Remembering. In: Class and Culture in the South Pacific. A. Hooper et al., eds. Suva: Institute of Pacific Studies. Pp. 78-91.

Hereniko, Vilsoni
1994 Representations of Cultural Identities. In Tides of History: The Pacific in the Twentieth Century ed. Kerry Howe, Robert Kiste and Brij Lal (Honolulu, University of Hawaii Press).

Week 4 (2 February) : Culture and Identity in the Pacific

Part I:

Hau`ofa, Epeli
1993 Our Sea of Islands. In A New Oceania: Rediscovering Our Sea of Islands (Suva, University of the South Pacific) 2-16.

Trask, Haunani
1992 Politics in the Pacific Islands - Imperialism and Self-Determination. In From a Native Daughter: Colonialism and Sovereignty in Hawaii (Monroe, Common Courage Press) 51-77.

Part II:

Linnekin, J
1990 The Politics of Culture in the Pacific. In Linnekin and Poyer eds. Cultural Identity and Ethnicity in the Pacific. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. Pp. 149-174.

Jolly, Margaret
1992 Specters of Inauthenticity. In The Contemporary Pacific: A Journal of Pacific Affairs. Vol 4: 1, 49-72.

Week 5 (9 February) : Ethnography

(Hereniko away at ASAO)

Part I:

Clifford, James
1988 On Ethnographic Authority. In The Predicament of Culture. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Pp. 21-54.

Handelman, Don
1993 The Absence of Others, the Presence of Texts. In Creativity/Anthropology. ed. Smadar Lavie, Kirin Narayan and Renato Rosaldo Ithaca, Cornell University Press 133-152.

Part II:

Dominy, Michele
1990 Maori Sovereignty: A Feminist Invention of Tradition. In Linnekin and Poyer eds. 237-257.

White, Geoffrey
1991 Identity Through History: Living Stories in a Solomons Islands Society Cambridge, Cambridge University Press. Pp. xi-29.

Week 6 (16 February) : Travel Writing and Fiction

Part I:

Sharrad, Paul
1990 Imagining the Pacific. In Meanjin. Vol. 49: 4, 597-606.

Theroux, Paul
1992 Happy Isles of Oceania: Paddling the Pacific. London, Penguin Books 265-292.

Greenblatt, Stephen
1993 Kindly Visions [Review of Reading National Geographic by C. Lutz and J. Collins] The New Yorker. October 11, 1993, 112-120.

Part II (Week 6, February 16):

Hauofa, Epeli
1993 Tales of the Tikongs. Suva. Beake House. Pp. 7-26; 84-94.

Mita, Merata
1993 Indigenous Literature in a Colonised Society. In Te Ao Marama: Regaining Aoteaora. Maori Writers Speak Out. (Auckland, Reed) 310-314.

Week 7 (23 February) : Film and Video

(Students should come to class having seen the following which are on reserve in the library: Flying Fox in a Freedom Tree; Cannibal Tours)

Part I:

Ellen, Tricia
1993 Trashing Soundstage Earth. In Honolulu Weekly Vol.3: 47, 6-9.

Barclay, Barry
The Other Eye. In Te Ao Marama, 322-329.

Mellon, Jim
1992 Images of Micronesia on Film and Video. In Pacific History: Papers from the 8th Pacific History Association Conference (Mangilao, University of Guam Press and Micronesia Area Research Center) 385-403.

Lutkehaus, Nancy
1991 "Excuse Me, Everything is Not All Right": On Ethnography, Film and Representation (An Interview with Filmmaker Dennis O'Rourke). Cultural Anthropology 4(4): 422-437.

Part II:

Critique of Kula: Ring of Power (to be screened in class) and other films.

Week 8 (2 March) : Art, Museums and Public Places

Part I:

Lavine, Steven and Ivan Karp
1991 Introduction: Museums and Multiculturalism. In Exhibiting Cultures: The Poetics and Politics of Museum Display. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press. Pp. 1-9.

Nero, Karen
1992 Introduction: Challenging Communications in the Contemporary Pacific. In Pacific Studies: The Arts and Politics of Oceania. ed. Karen Nero. Vol.15: 4, 1-12.

Kaeppler, A
1989 Art and Aesthetics. In Developments in Polynesian Ethnology. Alan Howard and Robert Borofsky eds. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. Pp. 211-240.

Part II:

Cochrane, Susan and Hugh Stevenson
1990 Art in Public Places. In Look! Look! Gen! Look Again! Contemporary Art from Papua New Guinea ed. Susan Cochrane Simons (Townsville, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery) 33-38.

Part II (Week 8, cont.)

Nero, Karen
1992 The Breadfruit Story: Mythological Transformations in Palauan Politics. In Nero, ed. 235-261.

Lewis, Philip
1990 Tourist Art, Traditional Art, and the Museum in Papua New Guinea. In Art and Identity in Oceania. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. Pp. 149-163.

Week 9 (9 March) : Performance: Dance and Theater (video from the Polynesian Cultural Center and/or Festival of Pacific Arts.)

Part I:

Sinavaiana, C
1992 Comic Theater in Samoa as Indigenous Media. In Karen Nero, ed. The Arts and Politics of Oceania. Pacific Studies15(4): 199-209.

White, Geoffrey
1991 Identity Through History: Living Stories in a Solomon Islands Society (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) Pp. 133-156.

Potiki, Roma
1993 The Journey from Anxiety to Confidence. In Te Ao Marama. 314-319.

Part II:

Flinn, Juliana
1992 Pulapese Dance: Asserting Identity and Tradition in Modern Contexts. In Nero ed; Pp. 57-66.

Lindstrom, Lamont and Geoffrey White
1993 Singing History: Island Songs from the Pacific War. In P. Dark and R. Rose, eds. Artistic Heritage in a Changing Pacific. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. Pp. 185-196.

Stevenson, Karen
1992 Politicization of La Culture Maohi: The Creation of a Tahitian Cultural Identity. In Nero, ed; Pp. 117-136

Week 10 (16 March) Politics of Identity, American Style

Part I:

Clifford, James
1988 Identity in Mashpee. In Predicament of Culture. Pp. 277-346.

Part II (Week 10):

Dominguez, Virginia
1986 Introduction. In White By Definition: Social Classification in Creole Louisiana. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press. Pp. 1-16.

Kirkpatrick, John
1989 Trials of Identity in America. Cultural Anthropology 4(3): 301-311.

Appiah, Kwame Anthony 1992 African Identities. In In My Father's House: Africa in the Philosophy of Culture. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Pp. 173-180.

Week 11 (30 March) The Hill/Thomas Debate

Part I:

Morrison, Toni
1992 Introduction: Friday on the Potomac. In: T. Morrison, ed. Race-ing Justice, En-gendering Power. New York: Pantheon Books. Pp. vii-xxx.

Cornel West
1992 Black Leadership and the Pitfalls of Racial Reasoning. In Morrison, ed. Pp. 390-401.

Part II:

Lubiano, Wahneema
1992 Black Ladies, Welfare Queens and State Minstrels: Ideological War By Narrative Means. In Morrison, ed. Pp. 323-363.

Week 12 (6 April) Literature/Film/Performance

Part I:

Carla Kaplan
1992 Keep Hope Alive': Terry McMillan and Black Women's Romance. (43 pp.)

Gabriel, Teshome
1992 Thoughts on Nomadic Aesthetics and Black Independent

Cinema: Traces of a Journey (selection). In Ferguson et al. eds. Pp. 402-410.

Part II:

Chin, Daryl
1992 Multiculturalism and Its Masks: The Art of Identity Politics. Performing Arts Journal XIV(1): 1-15.

Sanner, Hans-Ulrich
1993 "Another Home Run for the Black Sox: Humor and Creativity in Hopi Ritual Clown Songs. In: New Voices in Native American Literary Criticism. Arnold Krupat, ed. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press. Pp. 149-173.

Week 13 (13 April) Art and Exhibition

Part I:

Clifford, James
1988 On Collecting Art and Culture. In The Predicament of Culture. Pp. 215-251.

Part II:

Karp, Ivan
1992 Introduction: Museums and Communities: The Politics of Public Culture. In The Politics of Public Culture. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press. Pp. 1-17.

Yau, John
1992 Please Wait by the Coatroom. In: Ferguson et al. eds. Pp. 133-139.

Week 14 (20 April) Identity and Tourism in "Paradise"

Part I:

Okamura, Jonathan
1980 Local Culture and Society in Hawaii. Amerasia 7(2): 119-137.

Buck, Elizabeth
1993 Contending Representations of Hawaiian Culture. In Paradise Remade: The Politics of Culture and History in Hawaii. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. Pp. 163-191.

Part II:

Trask, Haunani-Kay
1993 Lovely Hula Hands: Corporate Tourism and the Prostitution of Hawaiian Culture. In From a Native Daughter: Colonialism and Sovereignty in Hawai'i. Monroe, Maine: Common Courage Press. Pp. 179-197.

Desmond, Jane
1992 Selling the Contemporary American Primitive in Paradise. Paper read at American Studies Conference. Costa Mesa, CA. November 1992. (12 pp.)

Kennedy, Richard
1993 Curator, Community and the State in the Representation of Hawaii. Paper read at American Anthropological Association meeting. Washington, D.C. (12 pp.)

Week 15 (27 April) : Literature and Film

(Students should come to class having seen Blue Hawaii.)

Part I:

Balaz, Joe Selection of poems.

Hall, Dana

Wilson, Rob
1994 Blue Hawaii: Bamboo Ridge as Critical Regionalism. In What is in a Rim?: Critical Perspectives on the Asia-Pacific Idea (Boulder, Colorado: Westview Pres.)

Part II:

Critique of videos Ho`ala: Awakening (to be screened in class) and Blue Hawaii

Rampell, Ed
1992 Thumbs Down: 10 Hawaii Films to Make Your Loose Your Luau. Honolulu Weekly April 15, vol. 2 no. 16: 4-5.

Week 16 (4 May) : Music and Performance

Part I:

Osorio, John
1992 Songs of Our Natural Selves: The Enduring Voice of Nature in Hawaiian Music. In Pacific History, 429-437.

Silva, Kalena
1989 Culture, Change and Hawaiian Music. In Ethnies: Renaissance in the Pacific. Spring 1989 Vol.4. n.8-9-10. 114-121.

Weintraub, Andrew
1993 Jawaiian and Local Cultural Identity in Hawaii. Perfect Beat 1(2): 78-89.

Part II: Course Review and Evaluation

[Subject: Pacific/Comparative, Cultural Studies]

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