[ExI] Outsiders blamed for Easter Island's historic demise

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Mon Aug 2 21:37:04 UTC 2010

An archaeologist studying a remote Pacific island, world famous for
its strange stone statues, says outsiders - and not its ancestors -
should be blamed for its historic demise hundreds of years ago.


Dr Karina Croucher from The University of Manchester says her research
backs a growing body of opinion which casts new light on the people
living on the island of Rapa Nui, named ‘Easter Island’ by its
discoverers in 1722.

“Easter Islanders’ ancestors have been unfairly accused by Westerners
of being primitive and warlike, for toppling statues - or moai - and
for over-exploiting the island’s natural resources,” she said.

Dr Croucher, whose research is funded by the British Academy, added:
“There is a growing body of opinion which says history has been unkind
to the Easter Islanders - and my research confirms and underlines

“Rather than a story of self-inflicted deprivation, I agree with the
view that substantial blame has to rest with Western contact, ever
since Easter Island’s first sighting by Jacob Roggeveen in 1722.

“Visitors brought disease, pests and slavery, resulting in the tragic
demise of the local population and culture.

“There is little archaeological evidence to support the history of
internal warfare and collapse before contact with the outside world.”


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list