Hollywood's Hawaii
264 pages, 6 x 9
30 photographs
Release Date:01 Mar 2017
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Hollywood's Hawaii

Race, Nation, and War

SERIES: War Culture
Rutgers University Press
Whether presented as exotic fantasy, a strategic location during World War II, or a site combining postwar leisure with military culture, Hawaii and the South Pacific figure prominently in the U.S. national imagination. Hollywood’s Hawaii is the first full-length study of the film industry’s intense engagement with the Pacific region from 1898 to the present.
Delia Malia Caparoso Konzett highlights films that mirror the cultural and political climate of the country over more than a century—from the era of U.S. imperialism on through Jim Crow racial segregation, the attack on Pearl Harbor and WWII, the civil rights movement, the contemporary articulation of consumer and leisure culture, as well as the buildup of the modern military industrial complex. Focusing on important cultural questions pertaining to race, nationhood, and war, Konzett offers a unique view of Hollywood film history produced about the national periphery for mainland U.S. audiences. Hollywood’s Hawaii presents a history of cinema that examines Hawaii and the Pacific and its representations in film in the context of colonialism, war, Orientalism, occupation, military buildup, and entertainment. 
This book covers an entire history of 'Hollywood Hawaii' and does it in a superlative, utterly inclusive manner—in a text that is clear, concise, and deeply informative. This is a model of accessible, yet reliable scholarship.'
Wheeler Winston Dixon, author of Black and White Cinema: A Short History
A marvelously comprehensive gaze at cinematic representations of Hawai`i, this insightful study shows how those fictions constitute and are constituted by US imperialism, Christian capitalism, and white nationalism. Moreover, the imagined South Pacific is not a distant, fleeting pleasure but an imminent, durable presence. Gary Y. Okihiro, author of Island World: Hawai`i and the United States
A useful example of the many ways war and society intersect. H-Net
The strength of Hollywood's Hawaii is its breadth. Through this widened scope, Konzett examines Hollywood's representations of Hawaiians and Asians and explores how, throughout film history, they have echoed and complicated Hollywood's long, troubled history of representing black bodies. From minstrelsy (blackface and yellowface) to plantation (cotton and tobacco to sugarcane and pineapple) melodramas, Asians, Polynesians, and African Americans have been marginalized throughout film history. Konzett's work gets us closer to understanding the complex interplay of these multiple, layered, and problematic representational histories—and opens the door for further, more in-depth analyses of these intersectional cinematic moments. The Velvet Light Trap
Konzett's insightful book is a highly recommended puzzle piece of the ongoing critique about race and representation in film. The Journal of American Culture
DELIA MALIA CAPAROSO KONZETT is an associate professor of English, cinema, and women’s studies at the University of New Hampshire in Durham. She is the author of Ethnic Modernisms: Anzia Yezierska, Zora Neale Hurston, Jean Rhys, and the Aesthetics of Dislocation.
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