Mariners, Missionaries, and the Struggle for Hawaiian Bodies and Souls
This chapter deals with the antagonistic relationship between American missionaries and American sailors, in which Hawaiians were caught in the middle. It shows how that conflict literally played out on theatrical and musical stages in Hawaii and on the mainland. It frames this struggle using the indigenous Hawaiian term hukihuki, which means “the constant, opposing emotional pull two or more persons in conflict may exert on a third person, ostensibly to win his love, loyalty or influence but actually to gain supremacy in the two way power struggle.” Missionaries sought to keep Hawaiians attached to their islands, working on plantations that fed the missionary families' wealth and power. At the same time, sailors encouraged Hawaiians to leave the islands and enter into a global economy where, with their new cosmopolitan identities, they were treated as skilled laborers and given freedoms unavailable to plantation workers.
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