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Justice for Hawai'i

Hilo, United States

Term Offered: 
Girl waving large flag, symbolizing Hawaiian resistance to colonialism
Approximate Dates of Instruction: 
August 24, 2021 to September 17, 2021
Application Deadline: 
June 15, 2021
Info Session: Wednesday, May 12, 1:30-2:30 PM ( and 4:30-5:30 PM (

This program will examine the implications of U.S. occupation of Hawai'i on indigeneity, knowledge construction, identity formation, settler colonialism, and restorative justice through Gonzales (2013) Securing Paradise: Military-Tourism Partnerships in Hawai'i and the Philippines and Haunani-Kay Trask (1993) From a Native Daughter. Students will study the relationship between indigenous restorative practices, tourism, education, Hip Hop, and U.S. military presence in Hawai'i.

Hawai'i is an important site for studying the history of US colonialism. Hawai'i, a kingdom in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, was occupied by the United States government and became the 50th state in 1959. One of the many unique values of this site selection is that it will allow us to engage first-hand with topics we are studying. Interacting with the students, faculty, and community from the University Hawai'i Hilo will allow UW students to understand indigeneity, the history of the Pacific Islands, and the vestiges of US imperialism as the outcome of military colonial control and ideology within everyday life. Furthermore, students' examination of Hawai'i's colonial experience will allow them to make connections with how the outcome of United States jurisdiction implemented in Hawai'i is still seen today. This course will also broaden students' framework and concept of civic engagement by working with community-based organizations in Hilo. We will also utilize the site for gathering evidence, examples, and connections of lasting American presence in Hawai'i.

Note: All food will be provided by the program.

  • CHID 476: Decolonize Hawai'i (5 credits I&S)
Fulfills Requirements: 
CHID Cultural and Historical Engagement
CHID Power & Difference
I&S Credit
Total Program Fees: 

*Note that the fees stated above do not include some additional costs, including, but not limited to: airfare, Study Abroad Insurance ($1.72/day), and personal spending money. These costs will differ by program. Be sure to read our Fees, Financing, and Withdrawal information for details about the fee structure and payment schedule.