In the Aloha State, All (Identity) Politics Is Local

Despite Their Diverse Backgrounds, Hawaiians Prefer to Distinguish Themselves by Their Island Roots

A great novelty about Hawaii, at least among American states, is the extent of its ethnic diversity. White missionaries from the mainland and their descendants may have long dominated the island economy, but they don’t make up anything close to a majority of the population. Barely one in four residents is white, compared to more than three in four Americans nationally.

Various immigrant groups that supplied the lion’s share of labor in the heyday of the sugar and pineapple plantations came to live alongside one another. Most residents of Hawaii …

In Hawaii, an Immigrant Family that Bridged Japanese and American Worlds

How Siblings Torn Between Two Sides of the Pacific Forged Identities in the Aftermath of War

I still remember them at the dining table after dinner each night in our Honolulu home. Three elegant sisters, styled out of Vogue magazine, their jet black hair in neat …

How Living Abroad Brought Me Closer to Home

As a Californian With Korean-Irish Roots, I Felt More Like a Global Citizen—Until I Lived Outside the U.S.

In the summer of 1997, days after my 20th birthday, I was making my first international trip alone. I was going to Kuala Lumpur for the summer to intern at …