Literature of Hawai’i

In this course we will be thinking and talking about
a wide range of examples of “Literature of Hawai‘i.” We will be tracing
different literary genealogies and trajectories and exploring our own
definitions of this living and growing genre of creative expression. Instead of
thinking of literature as something static to be studied or contained on the
page, we will always be paying close attention to literature in
socio-political-historical context, and grounding ourselves in specific
historical examples to see how literature responds to and works upon the world.

For example, what active roles does literature play
in the contexts of building Hawaiian sovereignty, in describing local identity,
in education and in defiance of education, in discussing difficult contemporary
topics around race and immigration? Throughout, we will be discussing complex
and important themes like identity, language(s), (de/anti) colonialism, aloha
‘āina, humor, resistance, indigeneity, race, class, gender, and sexuality. And
we will be honoring the richness of this genre by stretching the boundaries of
“literature” to include performance, visual, oral, and musical texts.

Course Requirements

  • attendance and lively
    class discussion and participation
  • 3 four-page essays
  • 2 two-page close-reading
  • informal writing
  • final exam/project

Required Texts (tentative—please wait until first day of
class before purchasing)
at Revolution Books, 2626 King Street)

  • Eds.
    Kihleng, Oishi, Yamashiro, Routes Vol. 1
  • Brandy Nālani McDougall, Ka
    Makani Pa‘akai
  • R. Zamora Linmark, Rolling the R’s
  • Emelihter
    Kihleng, My Urohs