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M. L. Kawailanaokeawaiki Saffery

Laekahi Hoʻomōhala Haʻawina


Keʻena: SPAL 253B
Helu Kelepona: (808) 956-4028
Leka Uila:

Maya L. Kawailanaokeawaiki Saffery was born and raised in Ko‘olaupoko, O‘ahu and is an ongoing student of the language and culture of her ancestors. With a Bachelor’s degree in Hawaiian Language and both a Master’s and PhD in Education from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM), she serves as the Curriculum Specialist for Kawaihuelani Center for Hawaiian Language at UHM. In this capacity, she is responsible for researching, developing, implementing, and evaluating graduate and undergraduate curricula for use within Kawaihuelani as well as out in the broader community. In her doctoral research, she drew on images and lessons embedded in traditional mele to reveal ancestral concepts that she then wove together into a theory and pedagogy for ʻāina education. Her scholarly work focuses on approaches to education that honor and nurture the development of kanaka-‘āina (person-land) relationships in all aspects of the curriculum and pedagogy, ‘Ōiwi research methodologies, and development of culturally grounded, interdisciplinary Hawaiian language undergraduate and graduate curriculum.
Recent Publications
Journal Articles
    Saffery, M. (2019). Welina Mānoa: A Hawaiian language curriculum 
           that exposes acts of settler colonial erasure and reveals stories of
          ʻŌiwi survivance. Hūlili: Multidisciplinary Research on Hawaiian
          Well-Being, 11(2), 99-134.
Book Chapters
    Saffery, M. (2019). Sovereign spaces: Creating decolonial zones
        through hula & mele. In H. Aikau & V. Gonzalez (Eds.), Detours:
        A decolonial guide to Hawaiʻi (pp. 132-146). Durham, NC: Duke
        University Press.
   Saffery, M. (2018). Ua pā i ka leo: The power of our Native voices to
         enact and inspire Indigenous resurgence. In J. Corntassel, T.
        Alfred, N. Goodyear–Ka‘ōpua, N. Silva, H. Aikau, & D. Mucina
        (Eds.​), Everyday Acts of Resurgence: People, Places, Practices
        (pp. 109-114). Olympia: Intercontinental Cry.
    Saffery, M. (2016). He ala nihinihi ia a hiki i ka mole: A precarious yet
         worthwhile path to kuleana through Hawaiian place-based
         education. In K. Oliveira & E. Wright (Eds.), Kanaka ʻŌiwi
         Methodologies: Moʻolelo and Metaphors (pp. 109-135). Honolulu,
        HI: University of Hawaiʻi Press.

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