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Remaking Pacific PastsHistory, Memory, and Identity in Contemporary Theater from Oceania$
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Diana Looser

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824839765

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824839765.001.0001

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Reenacting Hawai‘i’s History in the Plays of Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl

Reenacting Hawai‘i’s History in the Plays of Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl

(p.163) Chapter 4 Reenacting Hawai‘i’s History in the Plays of Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl
Remaking Pacific Pasts

Diana Looser

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter considers three works about Hawai‘i’s changing colonial landscape produced by a single dramatist, Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl. These works are drawn from two genres of historiographic performance arising from her work as a playwright and museum educator: artistic “plays for the theatre” and more documentary “living history programs.” These include two plays dealing with early missionary contact and with incipient US statehood, as well as a major site-specific living history pageant about the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy. While playing an important ethical and political role in the ongoing reassertion of Hawaiian culture, identity, and self-determination, Kneubuhl’s oeuvre also draws attention to art’s tangible social impact in the postcolonial Pacific.

Keywords:   Victoria Nalani Kneubuhl, Native Hawaiian, theatre, living history, re-enactment, missionaries, Overthrow, hula

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