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Pacific Islands Speaking dustjacket

Pacific Islands Speaking

by Armstrong Sperry

Illustrations by Armstrong Sperry

MacMillan Company, New York, 1955

From the dustjacket:

On the Sunday morning of December 7, 1941, when an enemy air force struck at Pearl Harbor, the Pacific Ocean stepped into front-page news the world around. Islands whose names were unknown or unpronounceable to most Americans -- islands that stretched for almost 10,000 miles from the Aleutians to New Guinea -- stood suddenly like a line of sentinels guarding the western flank of North America.

As the Atomic Age shrinks the world in time and distance, these islands continue to grow in strategic importance. Today the remote savages of New Guinea, the proud Polynesians of Tahiti or Hawaii, are almost as close to us as the neighbor next door. American trusteeship over the former Japanese Mandate Islands has thrown the balance of power in the South Pacific. The welfare of millions of brown-skinned people who live on those islands has become our responsibility.

Perhaps if we understand them a little better we shall discover that beyond the differences of race or color or language, these people are men and women not so different from ourselves.

If we listen closely, perhaps we shall be able to hear the Pacific Islands speaking -- a universal language of hopes and fears,, the dreams and aspirations shared by us all. (Taken from the Forward.)


In this new book, Mr. Sperry has given us a picture of the peoples of the Pacific Islands as he himself knows and understands them.

His familiarity with and love of the South Sea Islands has provided the background for man of his adventure stories for young people. One of the best known of these, CALL IT COURAGE -- for which Mr. Sperry was awarded the Newbery Medal in 1940 -- tells the story of a Polynesian boy who was afraid and how he conquered his fear and developed courage and self-reliance.

This page last updated Sunday, 05/02/21, by Margo Burns, margo@ogram.org
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