Culture and Development in the Pacific: (dance) lessons from Rabi and Ocean Island

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


    This presentation will reflect on the history of phosphate mining on Banaba, also known as Ocean Island, in Kiribati and the impact of the displacement of indigenous Banabans to Rabi in Fiji. Cultural development, and particularly the performing arts, evolved on Rabi in response to the effect of a traumatising history in which not only was Banaban land removed by British, Australian and New Zealand mining, but World War II had drastically reduced an indigenous Banaban sense of sovereignty and efficacy through Japanese occupation. I reflect on how the destruction and removal of physical land results in a choreographic and musical renaissance for the Banabans that allows them to present their history as dance theater. Today Banabans are well known for their dancing and take responsibility for the maintenance of their performing arts, even as they still struggle with traditional approaches to "economic development."
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 2011
    EventInternational Austronesian Conference 2011 - Taipei Taiwan
    Duration: 1 Jan 2011 → …


    ConferenceInternational Austronesian Conference 2011
    Period1/01/11 → …


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