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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Pen of Molten Fire: Dr. Haunani-Kay Trask’s Writing as Indigenous Resistance


For Indigenous Pacific peoples, including those from islands and from coastal regions, it is the ocean that carries our stories through the currents. This article centers Haunani-Kay Trask’s work and the Pacific not as a place of separation but as a place of connection among Indigenous people using Kānaka Maoli and Coastal Chumash people as examples. Trask’s poetry and other literary work is discussed as a form of Indigenous resistance alongside personal narrative to thread the stories together, highlighting the ways in which militarization and other settler colonial practices have been used to limit the sovereign rights of Indigenous people.

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