Every Westerner’s Favorite Fantasy
July 28, 2021 3:22 AM   Subscribe

The linked article on the tiki fad is also worth a read.
posted by acb at 6:06 AM on July 28 [7 favorites]

The headline doesn’t actually reflect the piece.
posted by Ideefixe at 7:43 AM on July 28 [4 favorites]

Thank you for highlighting the author's name! Lisa Hix was featured on the blue before, writing a comprehensive, fascinating article drawing a line between the accumulated kitsch in TGI Friday's and the Fern Bar phenomenon of the late 70s (and the cultural and social dynamics involved).

Assuming this article is half as engrossing as that one, I'm going to love it! Accordingly, I'm going to table this read until later today when I'm in full relax mode. Thanks for the post.
posted by Theophrastus Johnson at 7:51 AM on July 28 [4 favorites]

I read this a few months ago, highly recommended if you want an in-depth exploration of the overall cultural implications of colonization in Hawaii, not just about the history of hula girls. The sections on the history of musical cross-pollination was great.
posted by q*ben at 1:32 PM on July 28 [2 favorites]

"The irony of it all is that the Western world wanted to capture paradise so badly, they destroyed it in the process."
From the tiki fad article posted above.
posted by glonous keming at 2:01 PM on July 28 [1 favorite]

Nice article. I once saw a collection of postcards that sailors and tourists sent home from stays in Hawaii during the 30s and 40s. At first they seemed, well, harmless, but after looking at a hundred of them, the accumulated toxic racism and sexism was staggering. I'm also sorry that Annette Hanshaw got sidetracked for a while doing fake Hawaiian songs.
posted by acrasis at 3:29 PM on July 28 [2 favorites]

I find it so weird that the white settler/US takeover of Hawaii gets a couple of paragraphs in this.

From the point of view of indigenous Hawaiians, surely that's what wrecked Hawaii? The whole exotic fantasy/hula girl thing is downstream, a consequence of that.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 6:24 PM on July 29 [3 favorites]

And then there's the peculiar eddy of the intersection between the hula fad and early-20th-century Masonic hazing jape culture, the DeMoulin Bros. Hulu Hula Bull Dance kit.
posted by acb at 2:59 PM on July 30

that link from acb deserves its own fpp
posted by glonous keming at 11:08 AM on July 31 [1 favorite]

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