In Decolonisation and the Pacific, Tracey Banivanua-Mar examines Oceania's important yet overlooked participation in global decolonization movements during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. While largely focused on the Anglophone western Pacific, this book's impressive scope examines the entire Pacific region as one interconnected whole and decenters metropolitan-peripheral relationships in exchange for transnational lateral networks connecting the often-marginalized peripheries of empire.

Theoretically, Banivanua-Mar questions the centrality of territoriality and the nation state in our understanding of decolonization and instead uses the individual and collective mind as the starting point for her analysis. She traces Oceania's “forgotten” peoples who were “subsumed by, or caught in the interstices between, national state borders,” but who nevertheless possessed a “political sophistication, physical mobility and a cosmopolitan connectedness to international networks” that is often underestimated in histories of Pacific decolonization (pp. 3, 225).

During the mid- to late-nineteenth century, the Pacific's transformation from a transit...

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