By Noenoe K. Silva
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Additional resources for Aloha Betrayed: Native Hawaiian Resistance to American Colonialism
Rather than interpreting the mass deaths as the results of God’s anger at the lack of piety of the Kanaka, Kamakau directly blamed foreign ways. ∂≠ For Kamakau the situation was not pono, not because the ali¿i were not pono but because of foreigners bringing the diseases, and with them the desire to rule over and become wealthy in Hawai¿i at the expense of the native people. Besides diseases, the haole also brought the idea of trade for money. Haole traders wanted sandalwood to sell in China, and the ali¿i desired and needed weaponry among other goods, not only for the interisland wars but to defend themselves against the haole.
If not, then Kekuaokalani, if he took care of the akua and thus behaved in pono ways, would take over the rule. Kamehameha did not predict the most momentous of the events that would follow his death. As part of the mourning practices, the ¿ai kapu was suspended and a temporary period of ¿ai noa (free eating) was established. ∑∞ This was a limited ¿ai noa, however, which was restricted to the aloali¿i—those surrounding the ali¿i nui. At this time, Liholiho was sent with Kekuaokalani north to Kawaihae because Kailua, where the m¯o¿¯ı had died, was considered deﬁled by the death.
The reduction of the language to writing was meant to, and did, facilitate the process of conversion to Christianity. It was in the production of the religious texts in Hawaiian that the word ‘‘pono’’ must ﬁrst have been used to translate such Christian concepts as ‘‘righteousness,’’ which previously had no referent in the minds of the Hawaiians. Whereas pono had been used previously to describe the ideal behavior of ali¿i and other concepts such as balance, completeness, and material well-being, it now took on the foreign connotation of conforming to Christian morality.
Aloha Betrayed: Native Hawaiian Resistance to American Colonialism by Noenoe K. Silva