Traditionally, Germany has been considered a minor player in Pacific history before World War II: its trade there was more limited than that of other nations, and whereas its European rivals established themselves as imperial forces beginning in the early modern era, Germany did not seriously pursue colonialism until the nineteenth century. Yet thanks to recent advances in the field emphasizing transoceanic networks and cultural encounters, it is now possible to develop a more nuanced understanding of German-Pacific history. The studies gathered here offer fascinating case studies of German commercial, scientific, and imperial activity against the backdrop of the Pacific's overlapping cultural circuits and complex oceanic transits.
Hartmut Berghoff is Director of the Institute of Economic and Social History at the University of Goettingen in Germany. From 2008 to 2015, he was the director of the German Historical Institute in Washington, DC. He specializes in the histories of consumption, business, immigration, and modern Germany.Frank Biess is Professor of Modern European History at the University of California-San Diego. His main areas of expertise are twentieth-century German history, the history of emotions, the history of wars and violence and their aftermaths, and transnational history.Ulrike Strasser is Professor of Early Modern History at the University of California-San Diego. Her research focuses on early modern Central European history, religious history, gender and sexuality, early modern world history, and history and theory.