According to Aloha-Hawaii, in ancient times, Hawaiians celebrated traditional holidays to celebrate special occasions (such as the birth of a baby, a successful harvest, or victory in battle). It was a way of honoring and thanking the gods for all their good fortune. Nowadays, you can find luaus all over the island. Genuine, old-fashioned luaus haven't existed for about 100 years.
The Hawaiian word was aha`aina, or pa`ina, and that could be translated as a big dinner or banquet. The word luau actually means one of the traditional dishes included in it, a kind of Hawaiian brand of chop suey that uses chicken or squid and plant leaves; taro leaf similar to spinach, in fact, is the real luau. Hula is a sensual dance traditionally danced by older women dressed in traditional costumes and who dawned a lei; it symbolized power and grace among Hawaiian women. Today, I wanted to dig a little deeper into this ancient tradition to share some of Hawaiian's rich history with all of you and also shed some light on the ways in which colonialism and the rapid expansion of Hawaii's tourism industry have reshaped Hawaiian culture.
Hawaiians love to teach us about their culture, and income supports native Hawaiians, since they are usually hired for jobs in luaus to give them a more authentic look. I don't consider luaus as a “looting” of Hawaiian culture, but a way to keep it alive, remembered and experienced. Kelly explains that these cases are also indisputable because Hawaiian activists who want to preserve the true meaning of their culture and protect their home have much more in mind than just plastic garlands. Victims participate in their victimization with huge ranges of feelings, from resistance to complicity, but the strength and continuity of the institution are shaped by men.
In its simplest form, a luau is a Hawaiian party where a group of people gather to celebrate and celebrate an event. Hula provided, as it remains today, a source of pleasure and, more importantly, a means to educate both Hawaiians and non-Islanders in the mythical ideology and ideals that gave meaning and continuity to ancient Hawaiian culture. In reality, this use of aloha is so far removed from any Hawaiian cultural context that it literally makes no sense. The Hawaiian luau has been built in popular mythology as a huge food and drink orgy that will leave the reveler bloated and dizzy, but smiling and satisfied.
The commodification of the Native Hawaiian experience, which gave rise to lūʻau events in continental states, dates back to the rise of the Hawaiian tourism industry in the early 20th century.