The Power of Revitalizing Hawaiian Culture

Learning more about the Hawaiian language can provide a wealth of insight into the unique cultural heritage of Hawaii.

Preserving and transmitting this special aspect of Hawaiian culture is essential for its revitalization.

The culture of Hawaii is the result of a combination of influences from ancient Polynesians to modern cultures such as Mexican, Chinese, Korean, Puerto Rican, Filipino, Portuguese, Spanish and American. The history of Hawaiian culture highlights the importance of literacy and places that preserve cultural documentation such as libraries, museums and archives. The modern interpretation is that without the Hawaiian language, Hawaiian culture will be lost.

To gain a better understanding of Hawaii's middle school teacher training program, an expert took the time to meet with Hawaiian education leaders. This is likely due to the high regard that Hawaiian culture has always had for rocks. The revitalization of Hawaiian is an ongoing effort based on what is preserved in memory, in Hawaiian archives and libraries, and on recordings in order to give young people the language of their ancestors as well as much of the culture it conveys. Hawaiian music was featured at the Columbia World's Fair and included two sounds that were new to Hawaiians.

At that time, there was a great cultural pressure to adapt to the “American” lifestyle and to speak English in order to live and work in Hawaii. As a result, many children did not grow up speaking Hawaiian fluently. The Hawaiian language is currently being revitalized but native Hawaiians traditionally spoke Hawaiian as their first language. Currently, ʻImiloa is leading a specialized Hawaiian language consortium that ensures the educational resources necessary for the growth of Hawaiian secondary education throughout Hawaii.

The proposed legislation to teach Hawaiian in public schools could have a major impact on Hawaiian culture if it is taught at all school levels. This could be achieved by providing resources for teachers and students alike to learn more about the language and its cultural significance.

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