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Seaborne ethnography and the natural history of man

Douglas, Bronwen

Description

This paper examines intellectual interchanges between European theorists in the science of man and sailors, naturalists and artists on scientific voyages in Oceania during the century after 1750. I argue that travellers' narratives and ethnographic representations were not mere reflexes of dominant metropolitan discourses, but were also personal productions generated in the tensions and ambiguities of cross-cultural encounters. I identify countersigns of indigenous agency embedded in such...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorDouglas, Bronwen
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-13T23:14:03Z
dc.identifier.issn0022-3344
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/88421
dc.description.abstractThis paper examines intellectual interchanges between European theorists in the science of man and sailors, naturalists and artists on scientific voyages in Oceania during the century after 1750. I argue that travellers' narratives and ethnographic representations were not mere reflexes of dominant metropolitan discourses, but were also personal productions generated in the tensions and ambiguities of cross-cultural encounters. I identify countersigns of indigenous agency embedded in such materials and evaluate their trajectory from the interactions which provoked them, through varied genres and media of voyagers' representations, to their contorted appropriation by European savants. My examples are drawn from British and French accounts of visits to New Holland and Van Diemen's Land between 1770 and 1802. In this paper, Aboriginal Australians, especially Tasmanians, serve as synecdoche for the indigenous inhabitants of Oceania generally, using the regional term in its extended early 19th-century sense which encompassed the present Indonesia and Australia along with Papua New Guinea, Aotearoa/New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
dc.publisherCarfax Publishing, Taylor & Francis Group
dc.sourceJournal of Pacific History
dc.titleSeaborne ethnography and the natural history of man
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.description.refereedYes
local.identifier.citationvolume38
dc.date.issued2003
local.identifier.absfor220206 - History and Philosophy of Science (incl. Non-historical Philosophy of Science)
local.identifier.absfor210301 - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History
local.identifier.ariespublicationMigratedxPub18107
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationDouglas, Bronwen, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.issue1
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage3
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage27
local.identifier.doi10.1080/0022334032000085792
dc.date.updated2015-12-12T08:36:48Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-14844286276
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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