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Title: Decolonizing Pacific Studies: Indigenous Perspectives, Knowledge, and Wisdom in Higher Education 
Author: Thaman, Konai Helu
Date: 2003
Publisher: University of Hawai'i Press
Center for Pacific Islands Studies
Citation: Thaman, K. H. 2003. Decolonizing Pacific Studies: Indigenous Perspectives, Knowledge, and Wisdom in Higher Education. Special issue, The Contemporary Pacific 15 (1): 1-17.
Abstract: As part of a larger effort to reflect critically on the nature, scope, and processes of
colonialism in Oceania, decolonizing the field of Pacific studies must focus on the
impact of colonialism on people’s minds—particularly on their ways of knowing,
their views of who and what they are, and what they consider worthwhile to teach
and to learn. It is essential to challenge the dominance of western philosophy, content,
and pedagogy in the lives and the education of Pacific peoples, and to reclaim
indigenous Oceanic perspectives, knowledge, and wisdom that have been devalued
or suppressed. Modern scholars and writers must examine the western disciplinary
frameworks within which they have been schooled, as well as the ideas
and images of the Pacific they have inherited, in order to move beyond them. The
curricula of formal education, particularly higher education, should include indigenous
Oceanic knowledge, worldviews, and philosophies of teaching and learning,
for several reasons: to contribute to and expand the general knowledge base
of higher education; to make university study more meaningful for many students;
to validate and legitimize academic work, particularly in the eyes of indigenous
peoples; and to enhance collaboration between indigenous and nonindigenous
ISSN: 1043-898X
Keywords: decolonization, globalization, indigenous worldviews, pedagogy, Pacific education, Pacific Islands studies
LC Subject Headings: Oceania -- Periodicals.

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