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Missionaries in Hawai'i: The Lives of Peter and Fanny Gulick, 1797-1883 Paperback – September 11, 2012
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"Extremely well researched and well written. I think it will make a lasting contribution to the history of missionaries in Hawai'i."―Paul Burlin
"Putney's introduction is a useful condensed overview of the motivating forces behind the American missionary movement, including nineteenth-century theology and views on race and ethnicity."―The New England Quarterly
"Putney tells the Gulicks' life stories with an assurance born of meticulous research and attention to contextual detail. . . . there is not doubt that Putney does well what he set out to do. His achievements are considerable. . . .Putney's study makes a decidedly constructive and welcome contribution to the field."―American Historical Review
"This well written and readable work includes seven chapters that are divided both chronologically and, more importantly, according to the geographical location of the Gulicks. Thus, it starts with Peter and Fanny's early life and upbringing in New England and New York, continues with the couple's mission work at various stations in Hawai'i, and ends with their move to Japan and their eventual deaths in that country. . . . Putney's monograph will be most appreciated by the general public and scholars of missionary history in Hawai'i."―The Hawaiian Journal of History
"Peter and Fanny spent nearly half a century in the Hawaiian kingdom, ranging from a hardscrabble existence on Molokai to helping found Punahou School, and their efforts not only helped draw Hawaii into America's political orbit, argues Putney; they helped preserve Hawaiian culture by bringing into into the modern age."―Honolulu Star-Advertiser
"Putney tells the Gulicks' life stories with an assurance born of meticulous research and attention to contextual detail. . . . Not framed as a tale of heroic deeds, Putney's narrative sustains an interest through his sketching of the complex exchanges between the New Englanders and the Native Hawaiian people. . . . He points to the rigidities, self-discipline, and sacrifices that marked the missionaries' experiences with a notable compassion for human frailties combined with a gently wry humor."―American Historical Review
"Meticulously researched, Missionaries in Hawai'i may prove an indispensable reference for specialists. Missiologists will doubtless appreciate both Putney's intimate familiarity with Gulick family history and his contextualization of their work."―Pacific Historical Review
"Putney raises his own important historiographical issue by pointing to the need for complex, balanced histories of the mission and missionaries that are neither hagiographic nor strictly condemnatory. In his text, the author does not shy away from critiques of the Gulicks; admitting that "their religious zealand cultural parochialism acted as blinders, preventing them from seeing much value in traditional Hawaiian society" (p. 157). . . . Putney's biography of the Gulicks adds important knowledge about missionary lives in Hawai'i to previous understandings. Contextualized as a view of Hawai'i from English-language sources, it is a recommended read."―The Catholic Historical Review
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
In researching the Gulicks, Putney's sources are impressive thanks to the large amount of preserved Gulick writings. The family papers are so numerous that Putney can state "that they make the Gulicks one of the best documented middle-class families in American history" (6). The author also spent two summers doing on-site research in Hawaii.
Some of the book's many strengths are its excellent research, lucid writing, unbiased approach, and skillful interweaving of the Gulicks' theologically conservative yet socially progressive beliefs with a narrative of their practical "jack-of-all-trades" missionary work. Regarding Putney's fair-minded approach, an example is how he portrays, through the eyes of their children and grandchildren, Peter and Fanny Gulick as parents and missionaries.Read more ›
Pretty easy to understand, not too academic thought it does have a huge bibliography which is useful to other researchers.