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Let us ‘island’ the world! Let us teach the inhabitants of planet Earth how to behave as if we were all living on islands!

My elder sister, Teresia Kieuea Teaiwa, proposed that we should make “island” a verb.

Teresia was an internationally acclaimed poet, an award-winning teacher, a globally cited feminist scholar and an activist for Pacific sovereignty and self-determination before she died from pancreatic cancer aged 48.

She understood well that Pacific islands were constantly viewed as static. Backwards. Underdeveloped. Lacking capacity and vulnerable. Islands and people were seen as fixed to the floor of a vast, overwhelming, rapidly rising ocean.

“As a noun, it’s so vulnerable to impinging forces,” she wrote in a poem. “Let us turn the energy of the island inside out. Let us ‘island’ the world! Let us teach the inhabitants of planet Earth how to behave as if we were all living on islands! For what is Earth but an island in our solar system?”

-Courtesy of Guardian News & Media Ltd
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/nov/03/no-more-drinking-water-little-food-our-island-is-a-field-of-bones

Story Information:

Country: Banaba

Topic: Climate Change (General)

Photo or video credit: -Courtesy of Guardian News & Media Ltd

Text Credit: Katerina Teaiwa

Date : 16 July 2023

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