New PDF release: A history of the Pacific Islands

February 27, 2018 | Japan | By admin | 0 Comments

By Steven R. Fischer

ISBN-10: 0333949757

ISBN-13: 9780333949757

A heritage of the Pacific Islands lines the human background of approximately one-third of the globe over a 50,000 yr span. this can be heritage on a grand scale, taking the islands of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia from prehistoric tradition to the current day via a skillful interpretation of scholarship within the box. Fischer's familiarity with paintings in archaeology and anthropology in addition to in historical past enriches the textual content, making this a e-book with extensive attraction for college kids and normal readers.

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Though one would expect genetic connections with the languages of Australia, whose Aborigines once shared Sahul with their northern neighbours the Archaic Papuans, none with reliable systematic correspondences has ever been found (perhaps because of the profound time depth which thwarts the limited capabilities of historical linguistics). The fact that other Near Oceanian islands reveal a similar extreme of linguistic diversity indicates that these islands, too, were initially settled by the two genetically and linguistically distinct peoples.

But marine pursuits, including shellfish and urchin gathering, dominated the lives of coastal Papuans in the shoreline settlements of New Britain, New Ireland and Bougainville in the Solomons. Changing domiciles often in search of new habitats, Archaic Papuans were a migrant people who seem to have seldom shied from close sea-crossings. With such movements and differentiated settlement patterns, networks of exchange increased and diversified. Some archæologists hold that obsidian (volcanic glass) from New Britain's Talasea site made its way to a number of further sites within the Bismarck Archipelago as early as 20 000 years ago; the trade continued for thousands of years.

Linguistically, the several languages of Remote Oceanic (Far Eastern Solomons, Micronesian, North Central Page 18 Vanuatu, Southern Vanuatu, New Caledonia) were also not at all involved in the many innovations which were now taking place in the emerging Central Pacific languages (Rotuman-West Fijian and Tokalau Fijian). Judging by the immediate prerequisites of colonizing distant islands, one would conclude that settler societies of Remote Oceania had to be strongly hierarchical in their structure; only a strong hierarchy of command ensured survival in settlement events, maintaining social order while safeguarding food production.

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A history of the Pacific Islands by Steven R. Fischer


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