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Traditional Micronesian SocietiesAdaptation, Integration, and Political Organization in the Central Pacific$
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Glenn Petersen

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780824832483

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824832483.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HAWAII SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hawaii.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hawaii University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

Micronesia and Micronesians

Micronesia and Micronesians

(p.12) Chapter 2 Micronesia and Micronesians
Traditional Micronesian Societies

Glenn Petersen

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter discusses the general character of Micronesian societies. It begins by addressing the question of whether Micronesia is a valid concept or category. There are those who doubt Micronesia’s existence as a meaningful culture area (that is, a region characterized by a range of similar cultural practices). Those who dismiss its validity or usefulness as a conceptual category, however, have for the most part ignored the underlying question of whether it makes sense to speak of culture areas or regions at all. To think cogently about Micronesia, two questions must be considered: Why do we even speak of culture areas? And are there compelling reasons for speaking of a region called Micronesia? The chapter then focuses on Micronesia’s islands which are often grouped into a series of archipelagoes: the Carolines, the Marianas, the Marshalls, and Kiribati.

Keywords:   Micronesian societies, Micronesia, cultural practices, culture areas, Carolines, Marianas, Marshalls, Kiribati

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