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this is what has happened in Hawai'i where the base culture associated with the Hawaiian language and practiced by most local students is interpreted in terms of an American-English aesthetic culture. The most common course in Hawai'i in recent years has been to reject the English-associated aesthetic culture that allows for the continuation of group loyalty. However, without the influence of Hawaiian aesthetic culture on their lives, even the ideals of the base culture weaken, and there is rejection of intellectual development, resulting in increased crime, and so forth, deplored by both Hawaiian and American culture.
Language not only plays an important part in the aesthetic culture that protects the lifestyle of a people by giving it status, it also ensures orderly change in culture as it adapts through time to new concepts and technologies. Since language documents within itself past changes and adaptations of a people, it legitimizes the concept of change, and shows that it can be accomplished within a traditional framework. Damaging rapid and radical change, however, is resisted by language since it carries with it old attitudes and concepts that will always continue to exert an influence on its speakers.
An example of how language maintenance has protected one well-known culture and adapted it successfully to the modern technological and highly-politicized world is the case of Japan. In Japan, the exclusive use of the indigenous language protected traditional customs and a base cultural feature emphasizing group consciousness, which has served the Japanese well both in the period previous to Western contact and in today's modern world. Features of Hawaiian base culture such as attention to detail, conciseness, and group consciousness could serve the Hawaiian people well in today's technological world if they could be strengthened and given status by Hawaiian aesthetic culture.
In discussing the role of the Hawaiian language in Hawaiian culture it is also well to remember that American English is a vehicle of its own culture and that English words carry their own connotations and history. Whenever Hawaiian is translated into English, the English words used add cultural connotations to the idea conveyed, while eliminating intended connotations and meanings of the original Hawaiian. An example of this are the words ali'i and maka'ainana. The usual translations of these words in English are "king" and "connoner," respectively. In American fairy tales, an English king carries connotations of the European feudal system, the American historical rebellion against King George (American law still forbids titles), royal decadence, and a fascination with royalty, as shown by all the attention given the marriage of Prince Charles in the American popular press. In American English, the term commoner suggests the word "common," which is very negative in the language (for example, "How common!" or "a common drunk"), connotes the existence of strong socio-economic stratification and distance, and even some of the economic and racial separation that exists in America itself.
The Hawaiian terms ali'i and maka'ainana have completely different connotations and even meanings. From the traditional Hawaiian viewpoint the ali'i and maka'ainana are the same people and one family. Both the early traditional historians Malo and Kamakau state that the ali'i and maka'ainana are one people descended from Papa and Wakea and that the ali'i came from within the maka'ainana. The
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