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From Samoa With Love?

Retracing the Footsteps

Völkerschauen, or human ethnological displays, promised to take visitors “around the world for fifty pennies,” providing a form of popular entertainment in late-nineteenth and early twentieth-century Germany while also satisfying deepening European curiosities about exotic peoples and places. For the Samoans—many of high social status—who traveled to Germany to take part in völkerschauen, the displays were seen as an opportunity to establish political ties with the colonial power.

From Samoa With Love? traces the history of these displays of “typically” Samoan forms of music, dance, and weapons performance that could be found in amusement parks, zoos, and even at Oktoberfest.  Recovering both German and Samoan interests in völkerschauen between 1895 and 1911, the book looks at how these Samoan ethnological displays shaped the ways German people saw foreign cultures. Echoes of völkerschauen, for instance, came to be seen in many works of art of the period, from Ludwig Kirchner’s woodcut Rowing Samoan Woman to Erich Heckel’s Samoan Dance, paintings and prints by the Samoan-descended artist Michel Tuffery, and works by artists of the Dresden-based collective Die Brücke. Featuring interviews with descendants of former völkerschauen performers, the detailed reconstruction in From Samoa With Love? goes well beyond clichés to present a nuanced picture of the phenomena of Samoan ethnological displays.

216 pages | 130 color plates | 8 1/4 x 10 3/4 | © 2014

Art: Middle Eastern, African, and Asian Art

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Table of Contents

A Word of Welcome
His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi
A Word of Welcome
His Royal Highness Franz Duke of Bavaria
Christine Kron
Hilke Thode-Arora
Fa'a Samoa -- Samoan culture
Galumalemana A. Hunkin
Germany's Pacific Pearl
Peter Hempenstall
The Brothers Fritz and Carl Marquardt : Settlers in Samoa, ethnic show impresarios and traders in ethnographica
Hilke Thode-Arora
"Around the world for fifty pence": The phenomenon of the ethnic shows
Hilke Thode-Arora
"The belles of Samoa": The Samoa show of 1895-97
Hilke Thode-Arora
"Our new fellow countrymen": The Samoa show of 1900-01
Hilke Thode-Arora
A diplomatic visit?: Tamasese in Germany and the Samoa show of 1910-11
Hilke Thode-Arora
The final era of the Kingdom of Bavaria: Luitpold of Bavaria and the Prinzregentenzeit (1886-1912)
Hermann Rumschöttel
"Ah, those Samoans!": German fantasies
Hilke Thode-Arora
Fine mats and fly whisks: Some concluding thoughts
Hilke Thode-Arora
My Siamani-Samoa-series
 Michel Tuffery

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