While the category of race remains indispensable for mapping the construction and maintenance of imperial hierarchies, this article argues that it is not sufficient. Far from being a universally accepted first principle in all colonial settings, racial thinking was viewed in German Samoa as an unwanted, highly controversial and even inflammatory approach to maintaining the asymmetrical communal relations necessitated by colonialism. Examining the civil unrest sparked by the publication of a racial theorist's manifesto in the colony's newspaper of record in 1911, and the ensuing furore this triggered in Germany, this article suggests that in German Samoa racial considerations came exceedingly late to the social and legal codification of colonial sexuality and marriage. Furthermore, when they arrived, they were resisted by Samoans, contested in the colonial metropole and subverted by leading officials in the colony.
|Number of pages||23|
|Journal||German History: The Journal of The German History Society|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|