This project provides students enrolled in an advanced media production class at Searider Productions (located at Wai'anae High School) with the opportunity to learn about the relationship between local language and identity through exploratory film-based ethnography. This project directly involves fields of study in the humanities that engage with questions of identity. In asking how language is a part of identity, questions such as Who am I?, Where am I from?, and Where am I going? will direct the students' research, and the students will encounter issues that are often explored by humanities scholars in literary studies, sociolinguistics, and cultural studies.
The students will use video projects to research various viewpoints on local language and identity by recording people in their communities as they use Pidgin, English, and other languages. They will also interview people with a range of backgrounds about Pidgin, including educators, community leaders, and family members. The students' work will culminate in two public presentations of their work at Wai'anae High School and at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa in the Spring of 2009. The video project will be introduced by Dr. Darrell H. Y.Lum, who will begin with a short reading from his own local literature. Following the showings, Dr. Lum will engage the audiences in a discussion of the issues that the video project raises.
We intend to continue this project at other locations in Hawai'i, pending funding.