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Pacific Islanders and Gender

Pacific Islanders are persons with indigenous origins to the subregions of the Pacific known as Polynesia (e.g., Tonga, Sāmoa, Hawai’i, and Aotearoa New Zealand), Melanesia (e.g., Fiji, Papua New Guinea, and Vanuatu), and Micronesia (e.g., Marshall Islands, Guam, and Palau). Their ancestors first migrated into the Pacific more than 4,000 years ago from Southeast Asia. They settled and thrived on many of the 25,000 islands and atolls spread across these subregions that span both the northern and southern hemispheres of the Pacific. The Pacific region comprises 180 million square kilometers of ocean, islands, and atolls, with more than 1,500 languages spoken across different island groups, nations, and territories. This entry is an overview of Pacific Islanders and gender. It is important to recognize the sociocultural ...

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