Studying Abroad, Marketing Globalization, Reconnecting Heritage: A Case Study in Tahiti

Crawford, Asalemo
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2016]
This thesis investigates specific dimensions of study abroad in the Pacific Islands, including motivation, classifications of different program types, the experiences of participants and their hosts. Focusing on a case study in Tahiti, this thesis argues several points. First, although research claims that a period of less than three months is not sufficient for cultural immersion through study abroad, this thesis supports findings that the venue or hosts of a study abroad group can lead to meaningful development of new understanding of cultural difference. Second, this thesis suggests that participation in study abroad is a tool of prestige and power for those coming from global metropoles to establish their global citizens. However, I argue that the qualities of prestige are configured differently for heritage students. Finally, with respect to indigenous and local representations of the Pacific, this thesis argues that there is a short period of hyper-indigenization of persons and locations that occurs during the time frame of study abroad programs touching both participants and providers. Where hyper-indigenization produces sense of unchanging and timeless indigeneity, this thesis finds a paradoxical denial of colonial history. However, for those participants who claim Pacific Island heritage, this thesis argues that through study abroad there is also a sense of reconnection to their identity.
M.A. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2016.
Includes bibliographical references.
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