Language and Culture of Kauai

November 15, 2017

Language and Culture of Kauai

Hawaiian culture, like all cultures, is deeply complex and interesting. Hawaiian culture also varies on each of Hawaii's main, major islands. Hawaiian cultures are varied much like cultures all across the mainland United States. Accents, word pronunciations, and even the meanings of words, especially slang, can change depending on where you are. With many of the more secluded communities on Hawaii's islands, these cultural differences can be more noticeable (in a good way).

Kauai, Hawaii
Braden Jarvis
The Hawaiian island of Kauai is one island that has an amazing culture. Most of all, the culture of Kauai is mellow. The people of Kauai and very passionate about following long-held traditions. Of course, the more known traditions in Hawaii, such as hula and Hawaiian music, are important to Kauai. Music played using traditional Hawaiian musical instruments, like the ukulele and the pa'u, is popular during performances. Kauai was once the location of a culturally important hula school, One that was seen as the best across all of Hawaii. Yet, hula is still a major part of Kauai's culture as there are still numerous hula learning facilities. Though most are geared towards tourists. Kauai is still considered a center of Hawaiian culture to many and especially its residents. The communities across Kauai have a deep interest in, and dedication to, keeping their local culture, traditions, and skills alive.

Below is a short list of Hawaiian words as examples of the Hawaiian language. The Hawaiian alphabet is currently comprised of 8 consonants: H, K, L, M, N, P, W, and ' ('okina) and 5 vowels: A, E, I, O, U

kahiko (traditional, old)
kahuna (priest, expert in a field)
kai (ocean, ocean water)
a hui hou (until we meet again)
aole (no)
ewa (westward)
kapu (tax, forbidden)
muumuu (long and loose fitting dress)
nani (beautiful)
nene (rare native goose)
kona (leeward, leeward wind)
koolau (windward side of island)