I estudiante-hu siha ma taitai lepblon Chamoru siha yan lepblon Tagata Māo’i siha yan lepblon Māori siha yan lepblon Kānaka ʻōiwi siha . . .
Si Emelihter Kihleng ha tuge’ i lepblo My Urohs. Taotao Pohnpei gui’.
Si Craig Santos Perez ha tuge’ i lepblo siha from unincorporated territory [hacha], [saina], yan [guma’]. Chamoru gui’. Ha tuge’ i lepblo-ña gi Fino’ Chamoru yan gi Fino’ Ingles lokkue’. Ha tufok i fino’ siha.
Si Keri Hulme ha tuge’ estoria “One Whale, Singing.” Ma’lak este na estoria. Tomtom i salungai.
Debidi i estudiante siha ma taitai lepblon Pasifiku siha.
Hu faisen i estudiante-hu siha kao bai i eskuela-ta ha na’sietbe lepblon Pasifiku siha para i estudiante-ña siha.
Inigue i fino-ñiha:
EN210 is described as an introduction to literature class. However, there is an obvious bias towards which aspects of literature that class introduces. Because we are a university on Guam, in the Pacific, we should be introduced with and familiar with pacific authors. We, as students, should be exposed to a variety of different authors, and not just dead, white, British males. We need more female writers, we need more POC writers, we need more LGBT+ writers, we need more female LGBT+ POC writers, and so on! I would like to ask the DEAL literature committee about what their opinion of Pacific tropes are. They are present in our daily lives, and we can all relate to them. Why shouldn’t we see them in a literary sphere? The DEAl literature committee should think about how important seeing pacific authors, even local authors, in the EN210 curriculum would be beneficial to the students of UOG.
I think that the EN210 literature book should definitely include Pacific authors. A large majority of writings that is considered to be a part of the “canon” are composed by white males. I feel that literature should not just have a Eurocentric approach. Literature should be diverse, and adding Pacific authors will help encourage students to see the world from different angles. I would recommend to the DEAL committee to incorporate publications such as Storyboard and other collections of Pacific writings into the EN210 course. Another recommendation I would make is to add storybooks and poetry by local writers into the required readings.
I would love to see more Pacific authors in my literature courses. I recently took Literature of the Pacific and was amazed that I was not exposed to Pacific Literature until my last semesters here at the university. I would definitely ask the DEAL literature committee to consider regarding adding Pacific authors into the standard EN210 textbook. Although, I believe the university would need somebody with the authority to approve or disapprove the literature that would be incorporated. A big issue of Pacific Literature is deciding exactly what would make or fall under that category or genre. While Albert Wendt, known as the founder of New Oceania, is described by scholars by setting the bar for Pacific Literature, others in academia may not think so. Then there are those like [Haunani-Kay] Trask who questions who can write Pacific literature, referring to the way people who move into Hawaii call their writing Pacific Literature when they are not considered native Hawaiian. Establishing what makes Pacific Literature and establishing a person with the authority to decide what piece goes into our textbook would greatly benefit our university and especially our literature program.
It is strange for me to realize that not having Pacific literature put in the text books in a Pacific class reflects the dominance Western Culture has on the island. It creates a pedagogical problem if the students do not learn about their island culture. There will always be a schism between what the students are reading and the lives that they lead. There is a problem with trying to squeeze Pacific stories in. The textbooks are made in the mainland. The Western canon dominates over there, creating a problem for Pacific writers to be included. The best thing I can come up with is that EN 210 classes provide a handout of native literature to learn alongside the textbook but that would create a sense of otherness in the class. That’s best idea I got so far.
I think more Pacific literature should be added to the earlier levels (EN110-EN210) of the English department. At least one piece of Pacific literature should be included in order to make the reading material relevant to the students. If the students are from off island or are foreigners, then they would benefit from the piece too. The more aware people become of the place they decide to live, then the more fortunate it is for them. The very thought that students can go their entire college careers without learning about the Japanese occupation on Guam is absolutely repulsive. In order to stand on the ground and see the history surrounding you, only then can a person truly appreciate the island of Guam. I would kindly ask the DEAL professors if they would consider adding more Pacific literature into their curriculum. I know that certain faculty members of DEAL have lived on Guam’s their whole lives, and have an interest in Pacific literature. This interest of Pacific literature in the English field is already being expressed in classes such as Pacific Women Writers and Pacific Literature classes, but it could also be expressed even further by allowing students to experience with Pacific literature beforehand.