Image: Amalia Weis


  1. ngot nondro – lit. “nose comes back” – a gift exchange – but each different type of compensation or exchange has a different linguistic term, marking the importance of the gift to Rauto culture
  2. For more on Melanesian social time, see To Remember the Faces of the Dead: The Plenitude of Memory in Southwestern New Britain (T. Maschio).
  3. They said we looked like spirits, or ghosts, freakish to many (Igle – tambaran in Tok Pisan – meaning spirit, uncanny, monster).
  4. Conical masks made of coconut tree fiber, each with its own characteristic face design, kamotmot are used in dancing and in the men’s secret society.
     

Thomas Maschio

Thomas Maschio is an anthropologist who studied the religious and ceremonial life of a Melanesian people of Papua New Guinea. He is the author of many academic articles and of the book, To Remember the Faces of the Dead: The Plenitude of Memory in Southwestern New Britain, published by The University of Wisconsin Press in 1994. He also writes personal essays and some of his pieces have appeared on the literary site, Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood. Tom lives in and was born and raised in Brooklyn New York. He is an avid fisherman.

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