Chiefs: Sense of Belonging versus Power and Politics
As a guideline to reading the articles of the thematic section “Chiefs of the Pacific,” this introduction suggests differentiating sacred chiefs and secular chiefs, understanding them respectively as a person receiving respect and supplying blessings in a hierarchical order and as the same person (or another) when the context changes to attribute political and/or economic power to them and put them at the summit of a social stratification. The four articles illustrate how this distinction became particularly useful after colonization.
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