Composition I

ENGLISH 100: Writing Place in Hawai‘i and the Pacific

Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30pm-2:45pm

Instructor: Lee Kava Office: KUY 215


Office Hours: T/Th 10:30am – 11:30am

Where do we write from? This question can refer not just to the parts of our identities that inform our writing, but it also to the places that influence how we write. In this course, we will work through techniques and processes of writing composition that focus on connections to place, particularly here in Hawai‘i. This class will prepare you for approaching academic writing that can be used no matter your current and future paths in your college careers. Through the shorter informal free-writes, in-class activities, journaling, and the major writing assignments of this course, you will be honing your skills for writing in a variety of genres that allow you as a writer to ask questions about “place,” “home,” and “belonging” in the contexts of Hawai‘i.

This course is segmented into four major writing units: the home narrative, rhetorical analysis, the exploratory essay, and the place-based argumentative research essay. Assignments are scaffolded within each unit to help you develop your ideas and skills regarding the writing process, from observation and inspiration to composition and revision. In developing your skills in descriptive writing, rhetorical analysis, critical reading and listening, and research, you will also be developing your own rhythm for composing, revising, and presenting your writing—skills you will be able use throughout your academic journey.


Required Texts

  • Aiko Yamashiro and Noelani Goodyear-Ka‘ōpua, eds. Value of Hawai‘i, Vol. 2: Ancestral Roots, Oceanic Visions. Honolulu: University of Hawai‘i Press, 2014.

All other supplemental texts will be posted on the class Laulima site. For certain days throughout the semester, I will ask you to print out a reading and bring to class for discussion and activities. I will give you ample warning for this ahead of time when you’ll need to bring readings to class.



  • Home Narrative Essay
  • Spoken Word Poem
  • Rhetorical Analysis/Poetry Analysis
  • Exploratory Essay
  • Research Proposal
  • Research Essay
  • Final presentation