Category Archives: Recent Pacific Publications

Making Micronesia: A Political Biography of Tosiwo Nakayama

Making Micronesia: A Political Biography of Tosiwo Nakayama, by CPIS affiliate faculty member David Hanlon (chair of the UHM History Department), is a biography of Tosiwo Nakayama, the first president of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). Nakayama was born to a Japanese father and an Chuukese woman in 1931 on  Piserach, part of an atoll northwest of the main Chuuk Lagoon group. He grew up during Japan’s colonial administration of Micronesia and the US-administered Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands. Nakayama studied at the University of Hawai‘i and in 1958 returned to Chuuk, where he quickly advanced through a series of administrative positions before winning election to the House of Delegates (later Senate) of the Congress of Micronesia. He served as its president from 1965 to1967 and again from 1973 to 1978. Nakayama was in the center of complex negotiations for FSM from local engagements wtih the US colonial presence to the creation of a nation-state against a fornidable array of local and external forces. Throughout the political story, Hanlon shares the remarkable story of the physical, political, and cultural distances that Nakayama negotiated. See Publications for more information.


Ancestral Places: Understanding Kanaka Geographies

Ancestral Places: Understanding Kanaka Geographies, by CPIS affiliate faculty member Kapāʻanaokalāokeola Oliviera (Kawaihuelani Center for Hawaiian Language), provides examples of how Kānaka utilize cartographic performances to map ancestral places and retain moʻolelo (historical accounts). In this book, Kapa offers a new framework in Kanaka epistemology and explores connections between Kānaka with their environment, tracing how moʻolelo and ʻāina inform a Kanaka sense of place. See Publications for more information.

The Art of Excavation

The Art of Excavation book cover

Leilani Tamu, the 9th Fulbright-Creative New Zealand Pacific Writer in Residence, recently published The Art of Excavation, which was one of her writing projects during her 2013 residency at the center. This book of poems uses the creative metaphor of excavation for reframing and retelling Pacific stories from her perspective. Leilani draws from her experiences as a mother, historian, former New Zealand diplomat, and columnist to delve into the complexities of the Pacific region. For more infomation, see Publications.

Special Issue! The Contemporary Pacific (26:2)

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A special issue of The Contemporary Pacific (26:2), titled Global Sport in the Pacific, is forthcoming this semester. It is guest edited by CPIS affiliate faculty member Faʻanofo (Lisa) Uperesa (UHM Ethnic Studies and Sociology) and Tom Mountjoy (University of Bergen). This issue features a series of photographs by Greg Semu. Articles include:

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Available from UH Press

I Ulu I Ka ʻĀina: Land, edited by Jonathan K Osorio, is the second publication in the Hawaiʻinuiākea series, and it tackles the subject of the Kanaka (Hawaiian) connection to the ʻāina (land) through articles, poetry, art, and photography. The collection acknowledges Kanaka’s intimate connection to the islands and the alienation of `āina from Kanaka that accelerated and intensified over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Contributors include Carlos Andrade, Kamana Beamer, April Drexel, Dana Nāone Hall, Neil Hannahs, Lia O’Neill Keawe, Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio, Noʻeau Peralto, Kekailoa Perry, and Kaiwipuni Lipe with Lilikalā Kameʻeleihiwa.
2013, 128 pages; ISBN 978-0-8248-3977-2, paper, US$16.00.
Gender on the Edge: Transgender, Gay, and Other Pacific Islanders, edited by Niko Besnier and Kalissa Alexeyeff, explores transgender identities and other forms of gender and sexuality that transcend the normative and pose important questions about society, culture, politics, and history. The dynamics of non-normative gendering and sexuality in the Pacific Islands are addressed alongside different social configurations, cultural contexts, and historical trajectories that generate diverse ways of being transgender across the societies of the region and also acknowledge that these differences are overlaid with commonalities and predictabilities. Contributors include Deborah Elliston, Reevan Dolgoy, Penelope Schoeffel, Makiko Kuwahara, Serge Tcherkézoff, Linda L Ikeda, Geir Henning Presterudstuen, Greg Dvorak (CPIS MA 2004), Mary Good, Sarina Pearson, Teresia K Teaiwa, Nicole George, Christine Stewart, and Sue Farran.
2014, 408 pages; ISBN 978-0-8248-3882-9, cloth, US$65.00; ISBN: 978-0-8248-3883-6; paper, US$35.00.

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Latest Two PIMS Books Launched

On 6 March 2014, the latest two volumes in the Pacific Islands Monograph Series (PIMS) were launched during a gathering in the offices of the Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center. To celebrate the new publications, PIMS Editor Tarcisius Kabutaulaka and Managing Editor Jan Rensel arranged a forum with presentations by authors David Akin (University of Michigan; author of Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom) and David Chappell (UH Mānoa; author of The Kanak Awakening: The Syncretic Anticolonialism of New Caledonia’s Red Scarves) on anticolonial resistance in Melanesia. David Hanlon of the UHM Department of History introduced David Chappell, and Geoffrey White of the UHM Department of Anthropology introduced David Akin. Carol Abe represented the University of Hawai‘i Press, which copublished the books with the Center for Pacific Islands Studies in late 2013. Warm thanks to all the cosponsors of the event as well as to all the volunteers who set up the reception and book sales tables afterwards.


PIMS Managing Editor Jan Rensel (far left) and PIMS Editor Tarcisius Kabutaulaka (second from right) join authors David Akin and David Chappell at the launch. Photo by Alan Howard.

PIMS Managing Editor Jan Rensel (far left) and PIMS Editor Tarcisius Kabutaulaka (second from right) join authors David Akin and David Chappell at the launch. Photo by Alan Howard.

Pacific Islands Monograph Series

The Center for Pacific Islands Studies is pleased to announce the publication of two new volumes in its Pacific Islands Monograph Series (PIMS)—Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaita Kastom by David Akin (University of Michigan) and Kanak Awakening: The Rise of Nationalism in New Caledonia by David Chappell, UHM History Department and CPIS affiliate faculty. Continue reading

Publications from UH Press

Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom by David Akin provides a sophisticated reading of Pacific Islander interactions with and responses to foreign influences and colonialism, while focusing on Malaita in Solomon Islands, more specifically on the Maasina Rule Movement. 2013, 552 pages. ISBN 978-0-8248-3814-0, cloth, US $59.00.

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Available from UH Press

Changing Contexts, Shifting Meanings: Transformations of Cultural Traditions in Oceania, edited by anthropologist Elfriede Hermann, examines cultural traditions as the products of interactions between people and context. 384 pages. ISBN 978-0-8248-3366-4, cloth, US$58.00.
Interpreting Corruption: Culture and Politics in the Pacific Islands, by Peter Larmour, addresses the popular topic of corruption by investigating the causes, meanings, gauges for, and types of corruption in the region. 208 pages. ISBN 978-0-8248-3514-9, cloth, US$49.00.
UH Press books can be ordered through the Orders Department, University of Hawai‘i Press, 2840 Kolowalu Street, Honolulu, HI 96822-1888; the website is