Abstract

This project centers Guåhan (Guam) as a critical site of rhetorical struggle over identity, indigeneity, and Americanness. Using Chamoru (Chamorro) cultural frameworks of inafa’ maolek (to make things good for each other), we illuminate how local responses and activism challenge US colonization and militarization. Efforts to “protect and defend” Pågat, a sacred site on the northeastern coast of Guåhan, focus on ancestral land, language and cultural revitalization, and self-determination. They rely primarily on actions that both depend on and reinforce communicative channels directed against the US nation-state. We argue that activism must first be rooted in our sacred spaces to give us strength for contending with American influence and critiquing militarization. Yet it is articulated through rhetoric that demonstrates complex and contradictory identities positioned as simultaneously part of the United States and exterior to it. Understanding these struggles from Guåhan offers an important launching point for efforts connecting ongoing transoceanic dialogues and resistance.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-6490
Print ISSN
0003-0678
Pages
pp. 837-858
Launched on MUSE
2015-09-21
Open Access
No
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