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Oceanic Archives, Indigenous Epistemologies, and Transpacific American Studies$
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Yuan Shu, Otto Heim, and Kendall Johnson

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9789888455775

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888455775.001.0001

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Oceanic Archives, Indigenous Epistemologies, and Transpacific American Studies

(p.1) Introduction
Oceanic Archives, Indigenous Epistemologies, and Transpacific American Studies

Yuan Shu

Hong Kong University Press

Against the background of colonialism and the emergence of de-colonial thinking, we first explore the trajectoryof the Euro-American consciousness and movement from the Atlantic coast tothe Pacific coast of the United States and from North America to the Asia Pacific,and suggest the specific ways in which Asian studies, Asian American studies, and Pacificstudies intervene in American exceptionalism as alternatives. Next, we considerthe formation and development of the Asia Pacific in terms of what Kuan-HsingChen calls “Asia as method,” and the construction of the Pacific Islands in relation towhat Epeli Hau‘ofa defines as “our sea of islands” and “the ocean in us.” While Cheninsists on decolonization as a mutual process for the colonized and the colonizeralike, Hau‘ofa envisions a new indigenous way of rereading geography and rewriting humanity against neocolonialist and neo-imperialist practice. By investigatingthe transpacific as moments of military, cultural, and geopolitical contentions aswell as sites of global economic integration and resistance, we develop transpacificAmerican studies as a new critical paradigm in transnational American studies.

Keywords:   Neo-colonialism, Imperialism, Euro-American consciousness, Kuan-HsingChen, Walter Mignolo, Epeli Hau‘ofa

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