The mutiny on the Bounty was one of the most controversial events of eighteenth-century maritime history. Mutiny and Aftermath publishes a full and absorbing narrative of the events by one of the participants, the boatswain’s mate James Morrison, who tells the story of the mounting tensions over the course of the voyage out to Tahiti, the fascinating encounter with Polynesian culture there, and the shocking drama of the event itself. It is based directly on a close study of Morrison’s original manuscript, one of the treasures of the Mitchell Library in Sydney, Australia.
The editors, Vanessa Smith and Nicholas Thomas, assess and explain Morrison’s observations of Islander culture and social relations, both on Tubuai in the Austral Islands and on Tahiti itself. The book fully identifies the Tahitian people and places that Morrison refers to and makes this remarkable text accessible for the first time to all those interested in an extraordinary chapter of early Pacific history.
“Morrison’s Account of the Mutiny on the Bounty has been known to scholars and students through Owen Rutter’s 1935 edition. Smith and Thomas draw on all the relevant scholarship in the seventy-five years since this edition, as well as their own distinguished research and expert understanding of Pacific cultures, to provide readers with an impeccable work of scholarship that will be an essential point of reference for all future writing on Tahiti at the time of first contact as well as on the Bounty mutiny itself.”—Rod Edmond, University of Kent
October 2013 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3676-4 / $45.00 cloth
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