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The Outrigger Canoes of Polynesia: A Study of Cultural Change and Conditions for Sustainable Development

Malm, Thomas LU (2008) Islands of the World X: Globalizing Islands; Culture, Peace, Resources and Sustainability
Abstract
A series of comparative studies is suggested, focused on perceptions of outrigger canoes, and aimed at an increased understanding of the relationship between social relations, biodiversity, and sustainable development in Oceanic societies on small islands and in coastal areas undergoing rapid cultural change. After a critique of the recent notion that canoe-building in Polynesia developed as a result of natural selection, and after discussing the declining local interest in outrigger canoes, it is argued that these canoes can be regarded as a "total social phenomenon" or "fact", in Marcel Mauss' sense of the term. By focusing on such a phenomenon/fact, it is possible to understand many other societal aspects to which it is connected,... (More)
A series of comparative studies is suggested, focused on perceptions of outrigger canoes, and aimed at an increased understanding of the relationship between social relations, biodiversity, and sustainable development in Oceanic societies on small islands and in coastal areas undergoing rapid cultural change. After a critique of the recent notion that canoe-building in Polynesia developed as a result of natural selection, and after discussing the declining local interest in outrigger canoes, it is argued that these canoes can be regarded as a "total social phenomenon" or "fact", in Marcel Mauss' sense of the term. By focusing on such a phenomenon/fact, it is possible to understand many other societal aspects to which it is connected, including gender relations, social structure, religion, perceptions of nature, economy, relationships between centre and periphery, and cultural change. With a focus on outrigger canoes, analyses should take into consideration the processes of imperialism, colonialism, acculturation, and modernisation. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to conference
publication status
unpublished
subject
keywords
Oceania, outriggers, human ecology, Marcel Mauss, cultural change, islands, canoes
pages
10 pages
conference name
Islands of the World X: Globalizing Islands; Culture, Peace, Resources and Sustainability
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
0693180b-53b0-444b-9403-3f0b6594e8d4 (old id 1226907)
alternative location
http://www.spc.int/coastfish/News/Trad/23/TRAD23.pdf
date added to LUP
2008-09-08 16:10:11
date last changed
2016-04-16 12:43:08
@misc{0693180b-53b0-444b-9403-3f0b6594e8d4,
  abstract     = {A series of comparative studies is suggested, focused on perceptions of outrigger canoes, and aimed at an increased understanding of the relationship between social relations, biodiversity, and sustainable development in Oceanic societies on small islands and in coastal areas undergoing rapid cultural change. After a critique of the recent notion that canoe-building in Polynesia developed as a result of natural selection, and after discussing the declining local interest in outrigger canoes, it is argued that these canoes can be regarded as a "total social phenomenon" or "fact", in Marcel Mauss' sense of the term. By focusing on such a phenomenon/fact, it is possible to understand many other societal aspects to which it is connected, including gender relations, social structure, religion, perceptions of nature, economy, relationships between centre and periphery, and cultural change. With a focus on outrigger canoes, analyses should take into consideration the processes of imperialism, colonialism, acculturation, and modernisation.},
  author       = {Malm, Thomas},
  keyword      = {Oceania,outriggers,human ecology,Marcel Mauss,cultural change,islands,canoes},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {10},
  title        = {The Outrigger Canoes of Polynesia: A Study of Cultural Change and Conditions for Sustainable Development},
  year         = {2008},
}