Decolonizing Pacific Studies - Essay Example

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In the paper “Decolonizing Pacific Studies” the researcher focuses on the process of changing and decolonizing the educational system, which will involve accepting indigenous perspectives and embracing the local culture, to change the face of education…
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Decolonizing Pacific Studies
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English Decolonizing Pacific Studies The colonization of the Pacific Islands was not only a physical affair, but it was also mental state of mind. Pacific Studies is a complex issue that involves reaching the educational platform all the way from kindergarten up to the university level, in order to give the learners a new language and a new thinking pattern (Thaman, 2000). This process involves reclaiming, regaining, and reclaiming the old indigenous lifestyle and culture that the Pacific is acclaimed for. However, to do this, first the society must acknowledge the contributions that the West has made to the Pacific and realize that the Pacific islands have their unique culture that they need to embrace.
Most of the educationalists in the Pacific have studied in the Western background. Furthermore, the Pacific studies are a branch of the Western education, and to completely integrate it, it would need consistency and dedication. The reality is that Pacific studies mainly consist of Western language, thinking, and philosophy. Decolonization of the mind, therefore, is going to be a process that needs time and dedication. To reintroduce the indigenous ways of thinking, education and the societal way of thinking and seeks to discourage the scientific methods of thinking that run the society in the Pacific nations.
However, Pacific studies do not necessarily value indigenous perspectives and furthermore does not regard multicultural education (Thaman, 2000). The process of changing and decolonizing the educational system will involve accepting indigenous perspectives and embracing the local culture, to change the face of education.
Imperialism, History, Writing and Theory
Imperialism vividly describes all the events that occurred during colonialism, and during the entire period that this process occurred, there are many historical accounts written to express the emotions of the local people during this critical period. The process of imperialism began with historical figures such as Christopher Columbus a long time ago, and these people were the ancestors of colonization. Indeed, colonialism and imperialism are synonymous, and they both had similar goals in the systematic areas that they were adopted.
The primary aim of imperialism was to cater for the expansion of Europe, as the lands that were under these powerful countries had abundant raw materials that would help boost the industrial sector in the developed and more advanced nations (Smith, 1999).Colonization was the immediate result of imperialism, and it helped the countries that ruled over the others to attain raw materials, the best agricultural products and ready labor for the colonizer. Later on the indigenous people of this era began to fill the pinch of colonization, they understood what was occurring and began studying various concepts concerning imperialism.
The native population put up their structures and had particular systems of order in place as they started enlightening themselves on the rule of law. Imperialism had at that time destabilized the fabric of many indigenous communities, and it had disconnected them from much of their life including their home, people, culture, language and beliefs. Therefore, the people began to embrace literacy and writing as an effort to rediscover the lost culture and tradition (Smith, 1999).During colonialism, the Nationals were slowly disengaged from using their culture and heritage and this process of writing and literacy helped them to regain slowly lost ground. One valuable and unforgettable experience gained from decolonization was remembering the old things that people used to do.
Many scholars who aimed at raising sensitivity towards imperialism and its effects also managed to encourage individuals to recollect events from the past so as to be able to put together the pieces of the past and rediscover the vital parts of history that were taken during imperialism and colonization. Decolonization was a gradual process that involved reprogramming the minds of the people from the effects of colonialism and imperialism.
Smith, L. (1999). Decolonizing methodologies. London: Zed Books.
Thaman, K. (2000). Decolonizing Pacific Studies: Indigenous Perspectives, Knowledge, and Wisdom in Higher Education. Read More
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