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Imagined Islands: White Shadows in the South Seas and Cultural Ambivalence

From: Cinema Journal
41, Number 3, Spring 2002
pp. 98-121 | 10.1353/cj.2002.0008



This essay examines the ways that W. S. Van Dyke's island romance, White Shadows in the South Seas (1928), reveals the imprint of both desire and anxiety at the heart of American representations of the South Pacific. The film also highlights the transitional and contradictory nature of American cultural, racial, and sexual discourses of the 1920s.