People of the South Pacific Essay

1459 Words May 20th, 2013 6 Pages
The area of the South Pacific is a diverse and dynamic environment, full of many cultures that are all unique and yet share a common theme. The Polynesian triangle was settled over two and a half thousand years ago by ocean voyagers, known as the Lapita, from the Indonesian area. After settling islands across the South Pacific, the Lapitas developed communities based on cooperation and reciprocity(define..here or..?). Centuries later Polynesians began moving away from the islands to industrialized nations for education or better jobs. They remained in touch with their relatives back home and some even built support networks for the migrants who came after them. Movement is a dominant trait of South Pacific culture and history.Well done …show more content…
Most Tongans grow up knowing that they will one day leave the islands behind. They will migrate to the United States or Australia for work so that they can raise the status of their family back home. Someday they may return, or they may never go back. Some will send their children back to be raised and educated in the “Tongan way”, and some will bring their whole family across the ocean with them over time. All this migration introduced a new concept to the world, which is the idea of a transnational family. Cathy Small describes them as “families whose resources, kinship ties, and loyalties cut across national borders” (Small, 9). Polynesian communities are connected strong bonds formed by culture, history, and nationalism. These bonds are not easily broken, even when stretched across oceans. Excellent. Well-said. Sometimes cultures have to move and change to gain a foothold in a new world that is trying to push them out of their homes and native lands. Yes When imperialists show up in island nations of the South Pacific with canons and guns claiming the land for their respective monarch, Polynesian islanders are caught in the middle with primitive weapons and strategies. The Maori peoples of New Zealand had contact with many different European powers starting with the Dutch and the massacre at Murderer’s Bay (Thompson, 4-5). The Maori fared well in fending off the first of the European invaders but as time went on more colonizers came, eventually the

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