Noenoe Silva, Faculty, Department of Political Science, UH Mānoa

Noenoe Silva

Office: Saunders 640C
Telephone: 1 (808) 956-8030

UH Award Winner

Presidential Citation for Meritorious Teaching (2020)
CSS Excellence in Teaching Award (2008)


I was born on Oʻahu and am of Kanaka Maoli descent. I grew up in California and returned to Hawaiʻi nei in 1985. In 1991 I earned my bachelor's in Hawaiian language, and immediately began teaching Hawaiian here at UH Mānoa. In 1993 I completed a master's degree in Library and Information Studies, and in 1999 earned my doctorate in political science. I joined the faculty of political science in Fall 2001 and now serve as a full professor. I teach courses in Hawaiian and Indigenous politics, as well as Hawaiian language. My books include Aloha Betrayed: Native Hawaiian Resistance to American Colonialism and The Power of the Steel-tipped Pen: Reconstructing Native Hawaiian Intellectual History, both published by Duke University Press.


  • PhD, Political Science, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, 1999
  • MLIS, School of Library and Information Studies, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, 1993
  • BA (with distinction), Hawaiian Language, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, 1991


  • POLS 302: Native Hawaiian Politics
  • POLS 303: (Alpha) Topics in Hawai‘i Politics
  • POLS 304: Indigenous Politics
  • POLS 344: Nâ Politika ma ka Nûhou Hawai‘i – Politics in Hawaiian Language Media


I continue to be interested in recovering Kanaka Maoli history and literature through reading underused texts in Hawaiian from the 19th and early 20th centuries. I am interested in developing theory from within Hawaiian epistemologies and worldviews.