For a while, native Hawaiians had an adult literacy rate of nearly 100%. How was this accomplished?

  • 1
    Welcome to the site. An upvote to get you going.
    – Tom Au
    Oct 26, 2011 at 21:13

1 Answer 1


The biggest primary factor was to spread religion. When Christian missionaries came to Hawai'i in the early 1800s, they immediately began to institutionalize the conversion process. They even went so far as to send a printer in the first group of missionaries to quickly get scripture into the local language.

It was quite opportune timing for the missionaries - not long before their arrival, King Kamehameha II had ascended to rule and had essentially overthrown a very rigorous religious system. While the locals certainly had their concerns about the Christians and their customs, the message they spoke was much more appealing than the system that had just been abandoned.

So you have people with a religious void to fill, and a group of people with the ability to pump out lots of ideas, and on paper so it can be spread easily. It makes people very eager to learn, and in this case, because the medium was paper, also to learn read.

  • Welcome to the site. An upvote to get you going.
    – Tom Au
    Oct 26, 2011 at 21:15
  • 1
    Kink Kamehameha? O_o omg I really didn't know that…
    – o0'.
    Nov 4, 2014 at 12:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.