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Gossip and the Everyday Production of Politics$
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Niko Besnier

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780824833381

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824833381.001.0001

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The World from a Cooking Hut

The World from a Cooking Hut

(p.29) 2 The World from a Cooking Hut
Gossip and the Everyday Production of Politics

Niko Besnier

University of Hawai'i Press

The chapter presents the author’s account of his experiences on Nukulaelae Atoll, including some of the initial impressions he formed when he first arrived in the early 1980s. These impressions would later turn out to be as important to an understanding of political and social process on the atoll as the more nuanced insights he would eventually derive from the experience of years of cumulative fieldwork. He describes life on Nukulaelae, focusing in particular on the intimacy of contexts in which gossip takes place. He discusses islanders’ self-representations to themselves and the outside world in the course of history and in modern times, self-representations that foreground problematically an ideology of harmony and consensus.

Keywords:   Nukulaelae Atoll, gossip, islanders, self-representation

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