At any rate, O'Brien was also a moralist and a loner. This makes White Shadows in the South Seas, then, almost an anthology of myths, adventures at sea, and high personal drama and romance.
It's good to remember the long gone idyllic scenes of South Pacific islands, but it's also good to remind ourselves of more somber realities. Jack London, a bit earlier, also wrote of his encounter with the South Seas, albeit most of his stories are centered on Hawaii. Return to Book. O'Brien harshly denounces Europeans and Americans for their role in "depopulating" Polynesia. O'Brien died in in Sausalita, California. To see what your friends thought of this book, please up. His works describe his life in the Marquesas in detail, but outside of his books on Polynesia, little remains to be known about him.
But most of all, they are storytelling in a grand style.
More filters. Add this book to your favorite list ». They get tattoos, they fight with sharks, they eat dogs, cats, and sea centipedes, and they go around half-naked. O'Brien was outraged with these developments.
White shadow's nasty stories
Edward A. Salisbury, along with Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack, brought their motion picture cameras to the region. Sort order.
Open Preview See a Problem? And it is a pity that today, even among scholars on South Seas literature, he is sometimes forgotten. Showing Rating details.
Maybe also he still held some weird 19th century ideas about sunken continents and Polynesians as being actually Caucasians. This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers.
White shadows nasty stories
Want to Read saving…. One final note. Start your review of White Shadows in the South Seas. We think we have culture, while those poor primitives out there used to kill and eat each other. Other Editions Friend Reviews. Kindle Editions.
White shadows nasty stories
Today, the book is difficult to find, and Frederick O'Brien has slipped back into obscurity. I have labeled O'Brien's work as "so-called Travel Books" because they are much, much more than that simple deation indicates. Details if other :. He met various foreign castaways and hermits, he met tattooed old cannibals and recorded some of their rather horrific stories, he learned how to surf, climbed up the steep, green valleys, and admired the local girls, but at least in print did not succumb to their wiles.
Enlarge cover. Thanks for telling us about the problem. They did not disappear after all, but in the case of the Marquesas, they never recovered, their culture was shattered, and the survivors lived most dispiritedly amongst the luxuriant fruit, flowers, ferns, and rugged mountains surrounded by the Pacific.
Be the first to ask a question about White Shadows in the South Seas. Of course, our rivers do catch on fire occasionally, we pollute everything we touch, people are eating dog food come wintertime, thousands die of addictions every year, and we can wipe out whole villages from 35, feet up, and can threaten the whole planet if occasion demands.
White shadows stories
Goodre helps you keep track of books you want to read. Almost simultaneously with O'Brien, although just a bit later, came the postwar generation. Other editions. Get A Copy. In the language of current criticism, the depopulating might be seen as genocide. Error rating book. A planned autobiography O'Brien was in the pr This book on the South Seas, and two others that followed, gained its author, Frederick O'Brien, much fame and popularity in the s. He brought these values to the Marquesas and the South Seas, and, in so doing, was able to stand apart and make a critical commentary on the lives of Polynesians ravaged by their encounter with modern civilization.
White shadows in the south seas
They are part autobiography, part philosophy, part social science, and part scientific journal. Or, rather, as O'Brien undertook his journeys a generation earlier or more, perhaps Kerouac was the Frederick O'Brien of the American open road. Yes, well, have you ever seen a white shadow? He just did his best to fit in, accepting what was given and not looking shadow on anyone. Community Reviews. But for his time, he was right on. To ask other readers questions about White Shadows in the South Seasplease up. A planned autobiography O'Brien was in the process of writing soon disappeared after his death.
People used to write that about the Native Americans, Ainu, and Hawaiians too. Perhaps O'Brien did white story into what we today consider overwhelming and flowery prose not all that unusual in his erabut essentially he is a writer devoted to detail and the interruption of his own tale with stories of the people and places he encounters.
Salisbury and Nordhoff and Hall also mention the effect of the Spanish flu epidemic on Polynesians. Not only did they succumb to Western stories for which they had little or no immunity, but they were also subject to black-birding exported as virtual slave labor to Australasiaarmed invasion, and commercial trading that eviscerated the traditional patterns of work, worship, and social hierarchy. Sheesh, what savages! Published May 16th first published August 1st More Details Original Title. For O'Brien describes shadows and peoples who were in the process of dying away. But never was there an individual about whom we know so much and so white at the same time.
O'Brien was, I suppose, the fulcrum between two great generations of South Seas writers and artists. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. Lists with This Book. This he did in three volumes deserving of a better fate than they have so far met. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. But he remains popular among the circle of people these days who still find something alluring in the now vanished world of Polynesia.
O'Brien himself was something of a globetrotting wanderer, and this trilogy of so-called Travel Books leaves him looking like a Jack Kerouac of the South Seas.
He wrote a fine book about the lifeways and beauties of the remote archipelago that perhaps half a century before had hadpeople, but by had only 4, What I especially liked about this book is the sense that runs through the whole thing that such a disaster was entirely avoidable had people acted differently, that the supposedly civilized Westerners had caused this near-genocide, bringing disease and culture-collapse.
I was wondering what that was before I read this book, based on a stay in the Marquesas islands of the South Pacific back in Compared to what?
White shadows nasty stories
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. This book on the South Seas, and two others that followed, gained its author, Frederick O'Brien, much fame and popularity in the s. The only thing he could do about it, however, was to give life to their dying traditions.
You may find it for free on the web. Refresh and try again. Meanwhile, White Shadows in the Southern Seas the title refers to the calamity that European--especially French--and American civilization had brought to the Marquesasalong with Mystic Isles of the South Seas and Atolls of the Sun, did much to revive the popularity of the South Seas as a literary genre and a subject of romance and adventure for the general public in the West.
His fame died with him.