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Multicultural settler colonialism and indigenous struggle in Hawaiʻi : the politics of astronomy on Mauna a Wākea

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Title: Multicultural settler colonialism and indigenous struggle in Hawaiʻi : the politics of astronomy on Mauna a Wākea
Authors: Salazar, Joseph Anthony
Keywords: Iokepa Casumbal-Salazar
Issue Date: Dec 2014
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2014]
Abstract: This dissertation argues the struggle over Mauna Kea is emblematic of the larger struggle over Hawaiʻi. This is not a struggle for equality, participation, money, or recognition, but is instead a struggle over meaning and its making. I argue that the latest push for another telescope takes place in the broader context of multicultural settler colonialism under U.S. occupation: realized through law and rationalized by science. The dissertation intervenes in conventional discourses, staging a different conversation about the issue; one that interrogates the collusion of science, capital, law, and the state and the processes by which the University of Hawaiʻi becomes a steward of the land and Kanaka ʻŌiwi become obstructions to progress. I argue science, capital, and law are mobilized in ways that vindicate astronomy expansion in a liberal multicultural vision of "coexistence" that maintains rather than challenges hegemonic relations of power. Through archival research, formal interviews, discourse analysis, and participant observation I examine the politics of telescopes on the sacred mountain of Mauna a Wākea, the namesake of our ancestor-akua to whom all Kanaka trace our genealogies. I show how the mountain is not only sacred because, as some suggest, it provides a means by which to advance political interests, but rather because the mountain is the embodiment of an ancestor in a land-based onto-genealogical relationship that informs contemporary articulations of aloha ʻāina, anti-colonial work, indigeneity, the natural, and the sacred. My thesis is that the forms of power operative in astronomy expansion and the call for a moratorium on new telescope development become intelligible when located in the broader context of indigenous struggle against settler colonialism and U.S. empire in Hawaiʻi--when Kanaka ʻŌiwi are respected and heard on our own terms.
Description: Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2014.
Includes bibliographical references.
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Political Science

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