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A Faraway, Familiar PlaceAn Anthropologist Returns to Papua New Guinea$
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Michael French Smith

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824836863

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824836863.001.0001

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Meetings and Magic

Meetings and Magic

Chapter:
(p.96) Chapter 7 Meetings and Magic
Source:
A Faraway, Familiar Place
Author(s):

Michael French Smith

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824836863.003.0007

The author talks about the meetings he had with several knowledgeable men representing different Kragur clans to discuss their ancestry as part of the straksa project, with particular emphasis on the rights to magic that were passed down within clans. The discussions focused on the line of male ancestors leading directly to the current Kragur clan members, but there were disagreements over where to draw the line between the earliest laif man (Tok Pisin for living or mortal people) of the clan and what some of those gathered called spirit man (Tok Pisin for spirit people). Some of the men were also eager to record stories about their ancestors' exploits, such as clearing and planting land and acquiring rights to other kinds of property. The most important rights passed down within clans, however, are rights to magic. The author also considers the relevance of ramat wolap and kokwal as well as tumbuna save as the primary source of clan status.

Keywords:   clans, ancestry, straksa, magic, ancestors, Kragur, land, ramat wolap, kokwal, tumbuna save

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