Synopses & Reviews
This wide-ranging study of the Pacific Islands provides a dynamic and provocative account of the peopling of the Pacific, and its broad impact on world history. Spanning nearly 50,000 years of human presence in an area which comprises one-third of our planet - Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia - the narrative follows the development of the region, from New Guinea's earliest settlement to the creation of the modern Pacific states. It also examines the fascinating processes which have contributed to the formation of the hybrid Pacific we know today.
A History of the Pacific Islands
- traces the extraordinarily varied genealogy of all Pacific peoples, looking at their descent from Papuan tribesmen, Austronesian mariners and foreign colonists
- examines the rich inheritance of the Islands as a consequence of succeeding waves of invading, then dominating peoples
- explores the effect on the region - as well as the corresponding global implications - of voyaging, whaling, pandemics, colonization, trade, exploitation, war, nuclear testing and nationhood
Informed by the most recent research and scholarship, Steven Roger Fischer's unique text provides a comprehensive yet concise overview of the Pacific Island's past. It is a highly accessible and invaluable introduction to the history of an area which is currently emerging as pivotal in international affairs.
'A magnificent achievement - richly informative and engagingly written.' - Harvey Whitehouse, Queen's University of Belfast
'In substance and in style it has a discernably individual style that I find
appealing and which will make it very useful in a range of undergraduate
courses.' - Hugh Laracy, University of Auckland
'Steven Roger Fischer's History of the Pacific Islands is an excellent book that provides encyclopedic coverage of the field. It offers fascinating information not only to interested laymen, but also to students and experts working in the field and doing research in the area.' - Professor Dr Gunter Senft, Max-Planck-Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
'An excellent, comprehensive and up-to-date survey of the Pacific Islands, from prehistoric movements to modern political and economic realities. Recommended for all students of the Pacific.' - Professor Donald Tuzin, University of California, USA
'This is, in my view, the best recent introduction to Pacific history, one ideally suited for undergraduate study and for general readers.' - H. G. A. Hughes, Corwen, Wales, Reference Reviews
About the Author
STEVEN ROGER FISCHER is Director of the Institute of Polynesian Languages and Literatures, Auckland, New Zealand, and has authored and edited more than one hundred books and articles. He is best known for his successful decipherment of Easter Island's rongorongo script, and of ancient Crete's Phaistos Disk.
Table of Contents
List of Maps
The First Islanders
Melanesians, Micronesians, Polynesians
The European Trespass
The Second Colonization
New Pacific Identities
Pacific Islanders in Transit
Re-Inventing Pacific Islands
The 'New Pacific'
Selected Further Reading