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Cultures of CommemorationThe Politics of War, Memory, and History in the Mariana Islands$
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Keith L. Camacho

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835460

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835460.001.0001

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From Processions to Parades

From Processions to Parades

(p.83) Chapter 4 From Processions to Parades
Cultures of Commemoration

Keith L. Camacho

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines the commemorations of World War II that emerged in Guam in the postwar period, with particular emphasis on the historical development of Liberation Day from its inception in 1945 to the fiftieth anniversary of the war in 1994. It discusses the processes through which colonial and indigenous memories of the war contend for public representation in the commemoration of Liberation Day, first by focusing on the efforts of Agueda Iglesias Johnston, regarded as “one of the island's most respected school teachers and administrators.” It shows how Johnston shaped the initial themes of Liberation Day by envisioning a commemoration that suppressed the painful memories and histories of the war. It also explores how Chamorros used Liberation Day and the general narrative of loyalty not only to remember the past, but also to “support their claims for greater political power and social equality.” Finally, it considers how the meaning and direction of Liberation Day were affected by the rise in tourism and the overall changing local and international environment of the 1970s.

Keywords:   commemoration, World War II, Guam, Liberation Day, Agueda Iglesias Johnston, Chamorros, loyalty, social equality, tourism

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