Lost Generations: A Boy, a School, a Princess
384pp. September 2005
Lost Generations: A Boy, a School, a Princess
Author: Rath, J. Arthur;
"I learned who I was ... at Kamehameha."

In 1944, J. Arthur Rath, a part-Hawaiian boy from a broken home, entered the Kamehameha School for Boys as an eighth-grade boarder. Thus began Rath's love affair with an institution that he credits with turning his life around, with giving him and other disadvantaged children of native ancestry--Hawai‘i's "lost generations"--the confidence and support necessary to make something of themselves. This is the story of that love affair. It is also the story of Rath's recent battle, together with other alumni, for the integrity of his beloved Kamehameha against the school's trustees and their organization, the powerful Bishop Estate.

In a lively talk-story manner, Rath reminisces about campus life and his classmates, many of whom became lifelong friends and influential members of the Hawaiian community. Years later Rath, a successful retired businessman, would call on these same friends to hold Kamehameha's trustees accountable for their mismanagement of Bishop Estate's vast financial holdings and ultimately their failure to carry out founder Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop's mandate to educate Hawaiian children. Rath draws on his many personal ties to the school and the estate to provide surprising revelations on the trustees and the "Bishop Estate Scandal," which made headlines daily throughout the mid-1990s.

32 illus.

A Latitude 20 Book
"[Rath] has done a superb job. . . . I found the book to be both entertaining and informative. By combining an autobiography with the history of Hawaiians, [he] communicates a compelling story. . . . His creative use of a talk story format, which involved one-on-one conversations with Kamehameha School graduates, provides clarity to the many conflicts resulting from actions taken by the Bishop Estate trustees. Moreover, [this] format helps present a Hawaiian perspective to all the turmoil surrounding the Kamehameha Schools. . . . This book is an important addition to the many recent books written by Hawaiians. More importantly, for the first time, an investigation of the Kamehameha Schools illustrates how Princess Pauahi Bishop’s legacy helped nurture Hawaiians through education and how those Hawaiians, who were the beneficiaries of her gift, contributed to resurrecting Hawaiian culture and spawning a second Hawaiian revolution." —Hawaiian Journal of History (40, 2006)

"The last half of the book contains many more inside revelations about how the powerful, secretive Bishop Estate back-scratching club came unraveled." —Honolulu Advertiser

Author: Rath, J. Arthur;
J. Arthur Rath is a Kamehameha Schools graduate, author of several books, a retired public relations executive, and a former university adjunct professor. He is an inductee in the Kamehameha Schools Hall of Fame.
Read the prelude (PDF).