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Making Sense of MicronesiaThe Logic of Pacific Island Culture$
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Francis X. S.J. Hezel

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824836610

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824836610.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Making Sense of Micronesia

Francis X. Hezel

University of Hawai'i Press

This introduction provides a background on Micronesia, a group of islands that include Palau, the Marshall Islands, and the Federated States of Micronesia (Yap, Chuuk, Pohnpei, and Kosrae). Micronesia consists of roughly 2,000 islands, but only about 100 are inhabited. In this introduction, the history of Micronesia is discussed, from the time it was first settled by seafarers from Taiwan, to the 1500s when the islands began appearing on western maps. Colonization of the islands commenced in 1885, first by Spain, followed by Germany and Japan. The islands were surrendered by Japan to the United States at the end of World War II and were eventually granted self-rule in 1978. After gaining independence, Micronesia split into the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands—all of which remain bound to the United States by a Compact of Free Association.

Keywords:   Micronesia, Palau, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, colonization, Spain, Japan, United States, self-rule

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