University of Hawai’i at Manoa
1890 East-West Road, Moore Hall 569
Honolulu, HI 96822
Office: Moore 577
My linguistic activities are first descriptive, focused mainly on phonetics and phonology (especially prosodic features of Fijian and Polynesian), but also extended to grammatical description (Fijian, Nguna). Next, since my first contact with Oceanic languages, I have combed through various Pacific collections for information about the history of the study of Oceanic languages, especially Fijian and Polynesian. Teaching three semesters at the Seminar für Indonesische und Südseesprachen, Universitüt Hamburg revived an interest in German, which fits in with a hobby of singing and studying German Lieder, an activity that allows me to ponder the connection among music, poetry, and linguistics. Finally, I feel an obligation to write about Pacific languages and history for a readership outside academia.
These are the courses that I specialized in before I retired:
- Introduction to Language
- Field Methods
- History of the Hawaiian Language (for the Hawaiian and Indo-Pacific Languages and History Department)
- Seminar Topics: Borrowing, Polynesian phonology
- 1971. (with Rusiate T. Komaitai). Spoken Fijian. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press. 257 pp. 2nd ed., 1979.
- 1972. The languages of Fiji. Oxford: The Clarendon Press. xii, 120 pp.
- 1977. The diaries and correspondence of David Cargill, 1832-1843. Pacific History Series No. 10. Canberra: Australian National University Press. xvim 256 pp.
- 1978. Suva: A history and Guide. Sydney: Pacific Publications. 52 pp.
- 1985. The Fijian language. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press. xxxi, 688 pp.
- 1994. The voices of Eden: A history of Hawaiian language studies. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press. ix, 520 pp.
- 1995. All about Hawaiian. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press. vi, 69pp.
- 1997. Things Hawaiian: A pocket guide to the Hawaiian language. ‘Aiea, HI: Island Heritage.
- 2005. (with Gary N. Kahaho’omalu Kanada and Kenneth W. Cook) Pocket Hawaiian grammar: A reference grammar in dictionary form. Waipahu, HI: Island Heritage.
Click here for a complete list of publications.
I grew up on a farm in northern Indiana, received a B.Sc. from Purdue University in English, Speech, and Mathematics, and did graduate work at the University of Michigan, University of London, and Cornell University, where I received a Ph.D. in 1962. I’ve been a faculty member at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa since that time. My interest in the Pacific and in the history of Pacific linguistics was kindled by research and teaching in Hawai’i and Fiji in 1960-61. Since that time, I’ve worked in Pacific collections in Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, England, Germany, Norway, and the U.S. mainland, always on the general topic of the history of Pacific linguistic research, but also narrowing the focus to specific languages such as Fijian, Maori, and Hawaiian.