Dr. Judy Rohrer
Professor Rohrer's first book, Haoles in Hawai'i, was published in 2010 through the University of Hawai'i Press. It is the first volume in a series on race and ethnicity in Hawai'i. The text strives to make sense of haole (white person/whiteness in Hawai'i) and "the politics of haole" in current debates about race in Hawai'i. Recognizing it as a form of American whiteness specific to Hawai'i, Rohrer argues that haole was forged and reforged over two centuries of colonization and needs to be understood in that context.
She is working on her second manuscript, "Staking Claim: Race and Indigeneity in Hawaiʻi." It brings together an analysis of racial formation and colonization in the islands through a study of legal cases, contemporary public discourse (local media outlets, local literature), and Hawai'i scholarship. In it, Rohrer argues that the dual settler colonial processes of racializing native Hawaiians (erasing their indigeneity), and indigenizing non-Hawaiians, enable the staking of non-Hawaiian claims to Hawai'i.
Judy Rohrer is an Assistant Professor in Diversity and Community Studies at WKU. She earned her Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Hawai'i in 2005, and her B.A. in Political Science from Bryn Mawr College in 1989. After the completion of her B.A. and during her graduate studies, she worked for progressive nonprofits and activist organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is an interdisciplinary scholar with interests in indigenous studies, critical race studies, feminist theory, LGBTQ studies/queer theory, and disability studies.
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