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Fijian Dress and Body Modifications

Roderick Ewins

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Geographically, Fiji sits where the arbitrarily defined three triangles of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia intersect, and it shares many cultural elements with its neighbors on all sides, though Polynesian elements predominate. Bodywear has always been strongly differentiated in terms of age, gender, and social status. Nineteenth-century Christian missionary and colonial government intervention altered every aspect of custom, including bodywear. Items with any symbolic connection with the ol

Introduction to the Dress of the Pacific Islands

Adrienne L. Kaeppler

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Pacific Ocean covers one-third of the earth’s surface and is inhabited by hundreds of cultural groups. Some twenty-five thousand islands, ranging from tiny specks of coral to the large island of New Guinea, are occupied by physically diverse peoples, many of whom have mixed and intermixed. Environments range from snowy mountains to raging volcanoes, from steaming rain forests to parched deserts, from coral atolls to volcanic outcrops. These Pacific Islands are usually divided into three histo

Photographic Representations of Pacific Peoples

Max Quanchi

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The first camera arrived in the Pacific shortly after it was invented in France in 1839, and photographs of Pacific Islanders were taken during several European voyages in the 1840s. Most of these photographs have not survived. Permanent European traders, settlers, and regular visitors increased after the founding of Botany Bay (Sydney) in 1788 and the growth of port towns at Honolulu, Papeete, Levuka, and Apia; and an accessible collection of photographs, many recording the dress and accoutremen

Relative Imagery: Patterns of Response to the Revival of Archaic Chiefly Dress in Fiji

Chloë Colchester

Source: Clothing as Material Culture 2005

Book chapter

The distribution of centres of masi production, which once covered a great swathe of the archipelago to the south and east of Viti Levu, suggests that prior to the conversion to Christianity and the colonial occupation of the islands masi was once formally organized into an established chiefly confederacy, a ritual polity (matanitu) centred on the paramount chief, vunivalu on the island of Bau. As the anthropologist A.M. Hocart understood, the masi garments of these chiefs were believed to play a

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