Blanks in the Writing: Possible Histories for West New Guinea

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    A brief review of the dominant genres of history available for the territory of West New Guinea suggests that the lack of community consultation by successive political rulers has been matched by a broad disregard for indigenous voices in the writing of history. West New Guinea remains a blank on the geopolitical map, a casualty of the boundary between Asia and the Pacific imagined by former colonial powers. The evolution of a cartographic profile for West New Guinea is revealing of first Dutch and then Indonesian strategic interests. A parallel history of contest over the naming of West New Guinea's parts indicates a broad awareness of the relationship between power and knowledge, and suggests that West New Guinea history in the post-Suharto era might again be open for radical revision.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)149-155
    JournalJournal of Pacific History
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 1999


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