I was contacted a few weeks back by Indian Country Today www.indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com They wanted to do a story on me and the documentary project I am working on called E Haku Inoa: To Weave A Name. I was introduced to a reporter named Rebecca Jacobs. She happens to be the first and only Indian Country Today reporter in the Hawaiian Islands. She also teaches a English class at the Hilo Community College, and when she invited me to speak to her class about my life experiences and my work it was very flattering. Currently the students in her class have an assignment where they have to compare their life experiences to one of five other people. One of those people is me, which is exciting! I hope that I will be able to see some of the essays once they are completed.
I had really wanted to hear more about the experiences of people living on the island, and how they felt about how their experiences compared with mine. But I had not really thought of any specific questions to ask beforehand, so when I had the chance to ask the class I became overwhelmed and couldn’t spit out a coherent question.
Now that I have had some time to think back on the class I have been able to come up with some questions. I have written a few questions below and I hope that students from the class as well as others will feel comfortable sharing their answers to the questions here in the comments section below.
When answering the questions below please state whether you cultural background and where you live.
How do you feel your cultural background has impacted your long term life goals?
What are the obstacles you face in expressing yourself or your identity?
How would you describe your relationship with your family? How have you felt enriched and/or hindered by your family?