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|Title:||Mothers Darlings of the South Pacific|
|New / Used:||New|
|Book Type:||Small paperback|
|Published By:||Otago University Press|
|Size (mm):||150 w x 230 h x d|
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Like a human tsunami, World War II brought two million American servicemen to the South Pacific where they left a human legacy of some thousands of children. Mothers’ Darlings of the South Pacific traces the intimate relationships that existed in the wartime Pacific between US servicemen and Indigenous women, and considers the fate of the resulting children. The American military command carefully managed such intimate relationships, applying US immigration law based on race to prevent marriage ‘across the colour line’. For Indigenous women and their American servicemen sweethearts, legal marriage was impossible, giving rise to a generation of children known as ‘GI babies’. Among these Pacific war children, one thing common to almost all is the longing to know more about their American father.
Mothers’ Darlings of the South Pacific traces these children’s stories of loss, emotion, longing and identity, and of lives lived in the shadow of global war. It considers the way these relationships developed in the major US bases of the South Pacific Command from Bora Bora in the east across to Solomon Islands in the west, and from the Gilbert Islands in the north to New Zealand.
The writers interviewed many of the children of the Americans and some of the few surviving mothers, as well as others who recalled the wartime presence in their islands. Oral histories reveal what the records of colonial governments and the military largely have ignored, providing a perspective on the effects of the US occupation that until now has been disregarded by historians of the Pacific war.