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Cultural Crossings / À la croisée des cultures

Negotiating Identities in Francophone and Anglophone Pacific Literatures / De la négociation des identités dans les littératures francophones et anglophones du Pacifique

Series:

Raylene Ramsay

Hitherto undiscovered yet fundamental historical and literary texts from the Pacific provide the subject matter of this collection of essays which sets out to explore the new forms of writing and hybrid identities emerging from both past and contemporary cultural contact and exchange in the ‘South Seas’.
This is also a weaving of the connections between Francophone and Anglophone writers long separated by colonial history. Luis Cardoso, writing in Portuguese from East Timor offers further points of contrast. The places of encounter – the beaches of Tahiti, the retelling of the texts of oral tradition, indigenous mastery of writing and appropriation of Western technology, the construction of contemporary Pacific anthologies or emerging post-colonial writing and translation – are sites of interaction and mixing that also involve negotiations of mana or power. From Pierre Loti’s mythical and feminised Tahitians to Déwé Gorodé’s silenced women, the outcomes of such negotiations are dynamic and different syncretisms. Two chapters reexamine the theoretical concept of hybridity from these Pacific perspectives.
Les articles publiés dans le présent recueil explorent les nouvelles formes d’écriture et les identités hybrides issues du creuset des Mers du Sud. Relativement inconnus, les textes au cœur de ces articles n’en sont pas moins les œuvres fondatrices de la région du Pacifique Sud dont ils constituent la trame historique et littéraire.
Longtemps tenus à l’écart les uns des autres par l’histoire coloniale de la région, les textes d’auteurs francophones et anglophones s’enchevêtrent et se recoupent en de multiples domaines. La reprise des textes de tradition orale, l’appropriation autochtone des technologies occidentales, la création d’anthologies contemporaines et l’émergence d’une littérature postcoloniale, sont autant de sites d’interactions et de convergence qui exigent une négociation permanente entre les pouvoirs et mana en présence.
C’est une nouvelle facette du concept d’hybridité que nous proposent ces études de la région Pacifique.

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Pasifika Poetry an the Move. Staging Polynation 197

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Pasifika Poetry an the Move Staging Polynation Selina TUSITALA MARSH University of Auckland This article examines "Polynation", an internationally staged poetry performance show by poets of Pacific Island descent from Aotearoa, New Zealand.' lt critically reads the performance and considers the role performance poetry plays in realising and enacting ever-shifting cultural identities in the heterogeneous Pasifika diaspora writing community in Aotearoa, New Zealand. In doing so it also conceptualises towards a Pasifika aesthetic in the work of second- and third-generation poets. While this writing shares characteristics with other postcolonial writing, it also possesses attributes unique to the hybrid identities of those within the "Polynation" of Aotearoa, New Zealand. In 2008 "Polynation", a nine-person poetry performance show, pre- miered at the Queensland Poetry Festival in Canberra, Brisbane, Austra- lia. A month later it featured in the Going West Literary Festival in Titirangi, Auckland. lt was the first poetry show of its kind to be both staged in Aotearoa/New Zealand and overseas. Its MySpace page describes "Polynation" as the following: Polynation is a 60-minute show featuring contemporary Pasifika poets. The show teils stories from the Pacific Diaspora relocated in Niu Sila. Poetry themes range from exploring contemporary cultural borders, validating ur- ban Pasifika experiences, belonging, reconnecting with, and redefining cul- tural practices, validating the dreams and aspirations of past and current generations of Pasifika peoples. From humour to humility, tribute to chal- lenge, the poems in the show consist of the stories and songs about being `Pasifikan'. Line up of poets: Tusiata...

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