Rapa Nui / Isla de Pascua / Easter Island

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RapaNui 572

Straight from the Moai’s mouth!

Un símbolo misterioso

Rapa Nui is a timeless Chilean icon thanks to its 887 Moai – the mysterious stone monoliths, built 1250-1500AD. Many are unfinished, damaged or fallen.

Rapa Nui is in geographic isolation. The nearest continental point is Chile, over 3500km away!

Why are the Moai there? What happened their creators? The mystery is why the island interests me.

Una breve historia trágico

For 1000 years, Rapa Nui’s inhabitants had zero contact with outsiders. It was discovered by Dutch explorers on Easter Sunday, 1722. This allowed for foreign disease and destruction.

By 1770, the island was in the “aftermath of epidemic and population crash“. By 1868, not one Moai stood. Chile annexed the island, destroyed native vegetation and gave the land to agriculture.

The Moai statues witnessed the instability of Rapa Nui. Thankfully, the Polynesian language survived and the culture lives on.

Una revisión crítica

There are a few points about Rapa Nui that need addressing.

  1. There is more to the island than the Moai. Rapa Nui is not only its past, but has thriving marine life, pink-sand beaches and volcanoes!
  2. More importantly, how did Rapa Nui become a Chileanicon? The Moai weren’t built by Chileans! Chileans even assisted the downfall of the original Rapa Nui. However, it has been the excellent restorative work of Chilean and international specialists who are dedicated to the Moai’s maintenance. Today, Chile embracesthe traditional culture and spirit of the Rapa Nui, which continues with people, language, clothes, music, dance, crafts and food.

The annual Tapati festival celebrates traditions with body-painting, song, dance and the selection of the queen.

En mi opinión, la historia de la Isla de Pascua es muy interesante e quiero ir allí. Espero que las tradiciones de la gente Rapa Nui continúan durante siempre.

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2 thoughts on “Rapa Nui / Isla de Pascua / Easter Island

    1. Hi Bryonny,

      It is a disputed issue. Officially, Chile purchased the sheep ranches which covered the island, then claimed sovereignty over it. This land was purchased from the descendants of the Rapa Nui people who had died during the disease epidemics.

      Chile’s claim on Rapa Nui is a very grey area, due to the years of abuse and neglect of the island and its 5,000 residents by Chile. Now, Rapa Nui are threatening independence.

      Sebastian Piñera, President of Chile, hopes to find a peaceful solution to the conflict, while continuing to assert that the island is part of Chile

      More info is here and here.

      Like

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