Stories of the Harvest: Three Generations of Kona Women

Mito, Lian
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University of Hawaii at Manoa
When I first began to consider research topics for my senior honors thesis, I thought I would do a study on some common tale types found in traditional Japanese fairy tales. I fondly remember being told and read many tales as a child, such as Momotaro and Issunboshi. I was interested in the origin and variants of these tales that I enjoyed, but slowly found my research leading me into a dead end, as most of the resources were written in Japanese, if they were written at all. After several meetings with various advisors, Professor Curry suggested that I personalize my research and investigate the tales told within my own family. This idea interested me, beyond my mere enjoyment of the tales themselves. I somehow thought that the fairy tales I was told, and those told to my parents somehow influenced the values I hold and shaped the individual that I am Upon further investigation and conversation with my Mom and Grandma, however, I realized it wasn't so much the fairy tales they told (because there weren't very many), but the real life stories and experiences they shared and passed on (most times without my knowing it) that helped shape who I am.
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