Sunday, March 24, 2019
Tahiti and the French Polynesia :: essays research papers
Spread across nearly 2,000,000 square miles of the southwest Pacific, in an area as large as the continent of Europe, lies the filth of French Polynesia and its principal island, Tahiti. Settlers from Southeast Asia are thought to have start-off arrived in the Marquesas Islands, in the northeastern part of what is today called French Polynesia, slightly 300 AD and in the Society Islands, including Tahiti, to the west by some 800 AD. Prior to the first European contact, the islands were ruled by a power structure of hereditary tribal chiefs. The first Europeans to visit the area were the English explorers Samuel Wallis in 1767 and James Cook in 1769. French explorer Louis-Antoine de Bougainville arrived in 1768 and claimed the islands for France. In the late 1700s occasional ships arrived in the islands, most notably the H.M.S. Bounty in 1788, captained by William Bligh. The first missionaries, from the London Missionary Society, arrived in the islands in 1797. By 1815, with the support of the most powerful ruling family in the islands, the Pomares, the British missionaries had secured a strong influence in much of the Society Islands, doing everything possible to crush out traditional Polynesian culture by barring traditional dance and music as well as destroying carvings and temples associated with native religion.The French go on to hold influence over the Marquesian Archipelago and eventually were successful in arc the British and securing influence over much of what today constitutes French Polynesia, passing the ruling Pomare family as little more than figureheads. In 1880, King Pomare V was forced to abdicate, and a French colony was proclaimed. By 1901, the colony include the Austral Islands, the Gambier Archipelago, the Marquesas Islands, the Society Islands and the Tuamotu atolls to the southeast. The first half of the twentieth century saying periods of nationalistic protest in the colonies which were by then called the tablissements fran ais dOcanie (French Pacific Settlements).It was not, however, until afterward World War II, when Tahitians who had served France returned home, that pressure forced the French government to rifle French citizenship to all islanders. The first territorial assembly was established in 1946, and by 1949 the islands obtained representation in the French Assembly.In 1957, the territory was officially renamed the Territory of French Polynesia. The Republic of France is represented in the territory by a high commissioner appointed by the Republic. Throughout the second half of the twentieth century, limited autonomy was granted to the territorial government to simplicity socioeconomic policy but not defense, law and order, or international affairs.