During the interwar period, internationalists declared Hawai‘i the “new Geneva” of the Pacific: a locus for regional diplomacy, social reform, and cross-cultural exchange. This article examines the Pan-Pacific Women’s Association (PPWA) as part of the emerging Honolulu-based Pan-Pacific internationalist movement. The PPWA enacted social reform grounded in ideals of antiracism, affective connection, and cross-cultural exchange. The article recuperates “friendship” in two ways: first, as a fundamental tenet of Pacific interwar internationalist praxis, and second, as an analytic attuned to internationalism’s entanglements with empire, race, gender, and sexuality. Despite the PPWA’s progressive antiracist liberal cosmopolitanism, the ideology and practice of international and interracial friendship often consolidated, rather than dismantled, hierarchies of race, nationality, class, gender, and sexuality.

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