From a Native Daughter: “in our way of speaking, land is inherent to the people; it is like our bodies and our parents”

I’m going to be having a short Mauna Kea series of posts, starting with this one.

Sacred Mauna Kea


“This is how private property land tenure entered Hawai’i. The common people, driven from their birthright, received less than one percent of the land. They starved, while huge haole-owned sugar plantations thrived.

And what had the historians said? They had said that the Americans “liberated” the Hawaiians from an oppressive “feudal” system. By inventing a feudal past, the historians justify – and become complicituous in – massive American theft.

Is there “evidence” –  as historians call it – for traditional Hawaiian concepts of land use? The evidence is in the sayings of my people and in the words they wrote more than a century ago, much of which has been translated. Historians however, have chosen to ignore any references here to shared land use. But there is incontrevertible evidence in the very structure of the Hawaiian language. If the historians had bothered to learn our language (as any…

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