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Pacific Ingenuity: Mau Piailug and the Pwo Navigators of Micronesia

Kaʻiwakīloumoku Pacific Indigenous Institute presents
Episode 6

PACIFIC INGENUITY: Mau Piailug and the Pwo Navigators of Micronesia

*NOTE: use the blue dots located on the video progress bar to easily navigate between chapters.

Chapter 1:

We begin with a quick photographic overview of the Hōkūleʻa, from many months in drydock to its long-anticipated return to the water. As she prepares for upcoming voyages in the Pacific, we pause to reflect on our patriarch of traditional navigation, the late Papa Mau Piailug. Images of Papa Mau and Satawal are from the extraordinary 2013 film, Papa Mau: The Wayfinder, by Native Hawaiian filmmaker Nāʻālehu Anthony. Mau’s family of Micronesian Pwo navigators were featured at the Pacific People’s Forum in Honolulu in February 2020. Video highlights are courtesy of event sponsor Nia Tero, a global change organization dedicated to protecting indigenous ecosystems.

Chapter 2:

A virtual ceremony connecting atolls and high islands from Micronesia to Hawaiʻi was held on March 8, 2021, honoring Pius Mau Piailug and the Assembly of Micronesian Pwo Navigators. They were recognized as a Pacific Legacy of Distinction in a declaration presented by the ʻAha Moananuiākea Pacific Consortium. Lead representative Thomas Raffipiy signed the document, and leaders ratified the partnership with the ceremonial drinking of ʻawa and tuba, with compelling remarks by KS CEO Jack Wong and PVS President Nainoa Thompson. This historic episode ends with Anointed, a piece produced by Daniel Lin of Nia Tero featuring the powerfully visceral Marshall Islands poet Kathy Jetn̄il-Kijiner, who seeks solutions to climate change and other environmental impacts threatening her home island.

Original Release Date:
March 24, 2021 (Huna)