Sea People: The Puzzle of Polynesia

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Imagine a population of people with similar linguistic, cultural, and spiritual roots, but scattered across thousands of miles of open sea. This was the conundrum that European explorers encountered when they began roaming the vastness of the Pacific Ocean. How did these people end up in such scattershot locations, yet with such glaring similarities? How did they navigate these incredible distances? Where did they all come from? And what motivated them to undertake such journeys in the first place?

Christina Thompson endeavors to answer all of these questions in Sea People, a marvelous history of the Polynesian islands that goes well beyond the European writings to uncover the potential origins of a fascinating, scattered cultural group.

Separating fact from European legend and hyperbole, Thompson has assembled an amazing study of different Polynesian cultures, sifting through myth, historical reporting, religion, and anecdotes to chronicle the incredible accomplishments of explorers, adventurers, and civilization-builders who baffled and amazed not only the European explorers of the time, but modern sociologists and historians as well.

Sea People treats the Polynesians with the respect and interest that the culture richly deserves, and delivers an engrossing study on how, centuries before European explorers “discovered” the Pacific, native inhabitants had already conquered the vast ocean.


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Author Christina Thompson
Star Count 4.5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 384 pages
Publisher Harper
Publish Date 2019-03-12
ISBN 9780062060877
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue August 2019
Category History
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