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In Their Own Voices: Contemporary Native Hawaiian and Archaeological Narratives about Hawaiian Archaeology

In Their Own Voices: Contemporary Native Hawaiian and Archaeological Narratives about Hawaiian... Archaeology in Hawai‘i has reached the century mark, and public perception of the discipline as a marginal esoteric pursuit has changed to one that associates the practice with land development and colonialism. The sociopolitical climate surrounding archaeology in the Hawaiian Islands is charged, and controversial events have contributed to present-day tensions. However, to understand these tensions we must go beyond anecdotes. This article presents narratives about the sociopolitical history of Hawaiian archaeology as conveyed in ethnographic interviews with Native Hawaiians and archaeologists. Themes brought forth in these narratives include discussion about the persistence of a living Hawaiian culture and the varying degrees of archaeological commitment to that culture. Ultimately an approach is sought that emphasizes Native Hawaiian people and culture and reframes archaeology in a supporting role. Through such reframing, issues of the practical application of archaeologically constructed knowledge for descendant communities are addressed, and the capacity of the discipline to advocate for Native Hawaiian communities is increased. Changing the current trajectory of historic preservation in Hawai‘i to encompass a collaborative approach to cultural stewardship is necessary for the viability of the discipline as well as for the perpetuation of Hawaiian culture. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Contemporary Pacific University of Hawai'I Press

In Their Own Voices: Contemporary Native Hawaiian and Archaeological Narratives about Hawaiian Archaeology

The Contemporary Pacific , Volume 26 (1) – Mar 12, 2014

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-9464

Abstract

Archaeology in Hawai‘i has reached the century mark, and public perception of the discipline as a marginal esoteric pursuit has changed to one that associates the practice with land development and colonialism. The sociopolitical climate surrounding archaeology in the Hawaiian Islands is charged, and controversial events have contributed to present-day tensions. However, to understand these tensions we must go beyond anecdotes. This article presents narratives about the sociopolitical history of Hawaiian archaeology as conveyed in ethnographic interviews with Native Hawaiians and archaeologists. Themes brought forth in these narratives include discussion about the persistence of a living Hawaiian culture and the varying degrees of archaeological commitment to that culture. Ultimately an approach is sought that emphasizes Native Hawaiian people and culture and reframes archaeology in a supporting role. Through such reframing, issues of the practical application of archaeologically constructed knowledge for descendant communities are addressed, and the capacity of the discipline to advocate for Native Hawaiian communities is increased. Changing the current trajectory of historic preservation in Hawai‘i to encompass a collaborative approach to cultural stewardship is necessary for the viability of the discipline as well as for the perpetuation of Hawaiian culture.

Journal

The Contemporary PacificUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Mar 12, 2014

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