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Coconut Colonialism


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About the Author

Holger Droessler is Assistant Professor of History at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.


This is a significant and provocative book that is essential reading for anyone interested in colonialism in the South Pacific.
*Pacific Affairs*

Coconut Colonialism is a brilliant new work that captures a confluence of histories centered on the critical German colony of Samoa. It interrogates the globalizing moment brought by colonialism and capitalism, and laid bare in its encounters with indigenous Samoa. It is a global moment seized not only by colonial agents and commercial enterprise but contested by those they sought to dominate and exploit. Threaded with an angle of vision that centers Samoa’s colonized, its workers and subjects, Coconut Colonialism offers powerful new insights into both the local and global natures of colonialism. Coconut Colonialism is a critical contribution to our understanding and knowledge of Samoa, of German colonialism in particular and of the practices of colonialism writ more broadly.
*Damon Salesa, author of Island Time: New Zealand’s Pacific Futures*

Based on thorough and extensive research across multiple empires and regions, Droessler provides a strong history of the impacts of colonization and actions of native peoples, as well as histories of capitalism and labor in the Samoan region from the late nineteenth century through the end of World War II. This book is a great addition to the much needed scholarship on the Samoan region and the global influence of its people.
*Joanna Poblete, author of Balancing the Tides: Marine Practices in American Sāmoa*

Coconut Colonialism makes for fascinating reading on a much-neglected part of the German and US empires, the Pacific islands of Samoa. Richly documented, this study foregrounds the perspective of Samoan workers whose strategies of accommodation, and of resistance, come fully alive. An important contribution to the literature on colonialism and capitalism.
*Sebastian Conrad, Freie Universität Berlin*

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