Date of Graduation

Spring 5-18-2018

Document Access

Project/Capstone - Global access

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Asia Pacific Studies (MAPS)


College of Arts and Sciences


Asia Pacific Studies

First Advisor

Aouie Rubio

Second Advisor

Brian Dempster


This paper discusses the expansion of Oceania through a Marshallese indigenous lens as a focal point. It explains that decolonizing methodologies allows reclaiming of space for mental liberation and reassurement of constitutional rights. It highlights similar occurrences of decolonization practices meeting resistance in the 21st century all while strengthening the human right argument that no human deserves any less than their fellow human brothers and sisters. It argues that an indigenous imagery can only be viewed through an indigenous lens where the researches’ level of purity is retained and unfiltered. It nevertheless argues that Marshallese ethnolinguistics reveal the same cultural practices in America, Judeo-Christianity, and Oceania thus dictating the reality that “we are the same not withstanding one stays here and one there (Bedbedjin Bedbedjen, Bedbedjinma wot Kwe)”. It further explains the importance in these similarities and how Marshallese spirituality predates introduced American Judeo-Christianity despite the latter attempting to marginalize the former. It concludes by stating that Marshallese contributions on the global stage are rooted in that culture of love (IaKwe) which is echoed by the custom(s) revealing the significance of Marshallese validation academically, spiritually, economically, & socially to prevent institutionalized discrimination. This paper ends stating that the agency to know one’s self and how one should fit in the world, is a human right in itself and Marshallese are entitled to this sense of self worth through knowing thy self by thy self where real thinking takes place in one’s own mind as we all live our own lives.