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Sovereignty will not be funded : indigenous citizenship in Hawai'i's non-profit industrial complex

  • Author(s): Arvin, Maile Renee
  • et al.
Abstract

This thesis investigates the role of Native Hawaiians in contemporary non-profit industry fueled collaborations with state, federal and corporate institutions, using the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement's (CNHA) annual convention as a site that illuminates the shaping of an ideal mode of citizenship for Native Hawaiians. At stake in such a study is how indigenous political practice can find other modes of expression beyond achieving legal recognition on terms set by the United States, which are always limited by the settler colonial legacy of the nation state's founding and continuing present. CNHA, as a key player in Hawai'i's non-profit industrial complex in Hawaiì, importantly shapes not only the discourse surrounding federal recognition legislation for Native Hawaiians through its support of the Akaka Bill, but also broader understandings of Native Hawaiian subjectivity and sovereignty. Thus this thesis also addresses the interplay between the bureaucratic and middle-class nature of CNHA and the contesting articulations of sovereignty championed by those who protest CNHA. This allows me to address the gendered and racialized logics at play in the multiple processes of Native Hawaiian subject formation, at CNHA and in the other more "radical" sovereignty spaces. The thesis considers how Native Hawaiian political praxis can be regenerated in the face of various legacies of colonial and patriarchal blood quantum policies.

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