| ConstitutionNet | IDEA International
Originally published as ‘The future of governance in Papua New Guinea: consultations begin on form and system of government’
THE HAGUE - Papua New Guinea is currently undertaking consultations for potential constitutional reforms on a range of issues in relation to its form and system of government.
Key questions include the suitability of its current model of parliamentary governance and the relevance of a British monarch as the Head of State.
The role of the Head of State (currently Charles III, represented by a Governor-General) is limited to ceremonial duties, with a prime minister in charge of the affairs of the country.
Continue reading "Can PNG's political culture be reformed?" »
ADELAIDE - I am sure Phil Fitzpatrick is correct when he writes that Australia could have been a better coloniser.
That said though, I am sure that Australia was very far from the worst colonial power in history.
In my estimation, Australia's colonial model was perhaps the most fundamentally benign version devised during the European imperial era.
Continue reading "Colonial truth: Seldom pure & never simple" »
Britain did not resist Germany colonising north-east New Guinea in 1884 because it sought German support on more urgent matters. Australia seized the colony early in World War I (Deutsche Welle)
TUMBY BAY - During my short career as a kiap, I often pondered my presence in Papua New Guinea. What was I doing there and why was I doing it?
Kiap, didiman, tisa, kuskus, dokta, ansini, kamda* - I suppose we were all missionaries with the same message to sell.
Continue reading "Australia could have been a better coloniser" »
Fr Rex Dokta speaks at his ordination
Leo Noki is CEO of the Mt Hagen City Authority.
This article is derived from the speech Mr Noki
gave on behalf of the KomKui community at
the ordination of Father Rex Andrew Dokta
MT HAGEN - The Catholic Church in the Western Highlands Province conducts its mission under the leadership of Archbishop Douglas Young with the support of the more than 200,000 Catholic congregation.
I should note here that Holy Trinity Cathedral in Mt Hagen was opened and dedicated by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle only in October last year.
Continue reading "Destiny fulfilled: Fr Rex enters the priesthood" »
MORRISET – ‘Aus dem Leben der Kate auf Deutsch-Neuguinea’ (‘From the life of the Kate in German New Guinea’ may well be the first moving film made in what is now Papua New Guinea.
It was the creation of Professor Richard Neuhauss (1855-1915), an ethnologist from Berlin on an expedition to German New Guinea in 1909.
I was very excited to find this 114 year old 16mm film about Kate’s life in German New Guinea.
Continue reading "Was this 1909 Morobe film PNG’s first movie?" »
KUNDIAWA - There was some doubt in the sixties about how a country of 800 different tribes speaking 800 languages would come together under one united government.
These feelings were expressed freely by Australians as well as New Guineans.
Many expressed that New Guineans themselves were not developed and that the economy and infrastructure were not ready for self-rule.
Continue reading "A historian's view of the very near future...." »
MARTIN AWAYANG NAMORONG
PORT MORESBY - The Hela were some of the last people in Papua New Guinea to have contact with Europeans.
And one of the first outsiders to have contact with them was Jim Taylor during his 1937 patrol.
His daughter, Dame Meg Taylor, would retrace his journey decades later in her documentary ‘In My Father's Footsteps’.
Continue reading "Meg Taylor should be appointed our next GG" »
West Papua, the last frontier where humanity's greatness and wickedness are tested and where tragedy, aspiration and hope are revealed
BRISBANE - On 30 June the Indonesian parliament in Jakarta passed legislation to split West Papua into three more pieces.
The Papuan people's unifying name for their independence struggle, West Papua, is now being shattered by Jakarta's draconian policies.
Continue reading "West Papua: first one, then two, now five...." »
BILL BROWN MBE
SYDNEY - I read ‘The Forgotten Australian Patrol Officers’ by Luke Gosling OAM MP and wondered who had misled him and who determined that the majority of kiaps supported a memorial for kiaps.
I am one of the former kiaps who think the memorial concept is a nonsense.
Distinguished former kiaps like Harry West and Fred Kaad have departed, but they did not support the push for either a medal or a memorial.
Continue reading "Kiap nation builders do not need a memorial" »
"The kiaps’ role in the bringing to independence of PNG was undoubtedly unique and important and that should bring with it a certain sense of pride, but that is as far as it goes"
Don Kennedy with his wife Glen is presented the Australian Police Overseas Service Medal by federal MP Dr David Gillespie, the National Party member for the seat of Lyne on the northern coast of New South Wales
TUMBY BAY - Early this month, the Australian Institute of International Affairs published an article, ‘The Forgotten Australian Patrol Officers’, by Luke Gosling OAM, the Labor member for Solomon in the Northern Territory.
“What the kiaps did for Papua New Guinea is today called nation-building in official jargon,” Gosling wrote.
Continue reading "Reluctant kiaps: 'We don't want hero status'" »
Albanese recognises is Australia needs to embrace the reality of an aspiring China and also enter new arrangements with the USA that can better protect Australia
Illustration by Global Times
ADELAIDE – Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese has articulated a view of Australia' long term defence requirements that is based upon a pragmatic and realistic assessment of history and current facts.
Albanese does not characterise China as an enemy, nor is he advocating that Australia become a humble supplicant to the USA.
Continue reading "Albanese mission to fix Morrison’s problems" »
It’s one thing for Pacific people to know they had their culture taken from them. It’s another thing entirely to not know the artefacts and records of that culture still exist
| Trove Partnerships, National Library of Australia
CANBERRA – The Pacific Virtual Museum at the National Library of New Zealand is a remarkable project that brings together Pacific heritage collections from around the world under the masthead of Digital Pasifik.
Digital Pasifik is a website that allows people to discover digitised Pacific collections that are held around the world. You can link to it here.
Continue reading "Our Pacific heritage is now available online" »
"I have been reading history for 60 years now and one of the things I have realised is that the human urge for conquest and the instinct to dominate others transcends geography, ethnicity, language and culture" - Chris Overland
Assyrian Empire (2025-605 BCE)
ADELAIDE - The death of Queen Elizabeth II has led to some reflection upon the British Empire and its legacy.
Commentary has ranged from the vile and tasteless to thoughtful consideration upon what is undeniably a very mixed British imperial legacy.
Continue reading "Enough! We need to see the end of Empires" »
The sea took away my kin not long ago, but the sea is not the enemy. I do not blame the sea, the sea will always serve its purpose
PORT MORESBY - As the Bismarck moonlight shines so bright, I can recall early memories of being on a canoe with my uncles at night, fishing the pristine waters near our island for crayfish and reef fish.
This was where I was born and where I spent my first few months when isolation was at its greatest.
Continue reading "Serenade of the Sea" »
Allowing the market to entirely determine the distribution of wealth without the cautious restraining hand of government has hugely exaggerated the economic gap between winners and losers
Annexation of Papua, 1885
ADELAIDE - Traditional Melanesian culture was organised in ways that were and are totally at odds with the prevailing capitalist economic system.
I would characterise the traditional way of life as being based upon a system of mutual obligation and communalism, whereby each member of a social group both contributed to the common good of the group and, in turn, received benefits from it.
Continue reading "The tragic legacy of Australian colonialism" »
This piece was inspired by a conversation between Raymond and his father (‘A policeman remembers….’), who spoke of the venerated role of the colonial tanim tok (interpreter)
Kiaps talk with luluais, tultuls and tanim tok
DAGUA – Kiaps were government patrol officers within the Australian colonial administration who were tasked to bring control over the 850 tribes of the territories of Papua and New Guinea.
A vital person who patrolled with kiaps in this arduous and sometimes dangerous task was the tanim tok.
Continue reading "Tanim tok: government's voice in colonial PNG" »
Very few Pacific islands would opt for their current status if offered a choice to return to their pre-colonial lives. This could be more than a post-modern fantasy
CAIRNS - If you look at history through a Bougainvillean lens, independence is obvious and non-negotiable.
But the same sentiment applies to practically every other island group in the Pacific region.
Continue reading "A Pacific of small island states is no fantasy" »
“In mining, hard facts and foresight are important. We are very conscious of the fact that in a few years, Papua and New Guinea may be independent. Soon there may be an indigenous administration – call it a black president if you like"
Arawa headman Narug and other village leaders Monoerung Tavore (wearing glasses) and Kori (in hat) listen as kiap Max Heggen explains the Arawa Agreement under which villagers would forfeit a tract of land to allow a large town to be built to service the Panguna mine. Brown describes Narug as a tough negotiator but "thoughtful and reasonable."
BILL BROWN MBE
THE CHRONICLE CONTINUES – Bougainville District Commissioner Des (DN) Ashton paid the price for obeying orders at Rorovana when the Papua New Guinea Administration removed his authority over Bougainville Copper's areas of operation.
Following Australian Prime Minister John Gorton’s August intervention in the Rorovana confrontation, the Administration committed a special unit of a dozen kiaps to the mining operation.
Continue reading "A Kiap’s Chronicle: 33 – Development & dislocation" »
History is the product of the often imperfect actions of imperfect people, some more so than others. Genuine evil is present too
Genghis Khan - the ruthless and feared 13th century Mongol warrior-ruler was feared because of his ruthlessness and passion for massacre, rapine, destruction and revenge. Genghis Khan statue in Mongolia (G Adventures Inc)
ADELAIDE - I am sure that the Australian takeover of German New Guinea during and in the years following World War I was a far from perfect venture.
But, a reader of The Awkward Takeover of German New Guinea is invited to infer that the German regime was some sort of model of how to apply colonial rule in an orderly, methodical and humane way.
Continue reading "Much of history a far from perfect venture" »
“The 'family' construct is inappropriate in a context where Australia should be seeking to forge mature, meaningful and equivalent relationships with Pacific Island nations. The whole theme is patronising, inane and quite weird” – Keith Jackson
| Pearls & Irritations
MELBOURNE - When will this nonsense on familial connection between Australia and the Pacific end?
In 2018, Australia’s then Pentecostal prime minister, Scott Morrison, drew upon a term that his predecessors had not.
Continue reading "Patronising the ‘Pacific family’ we never had" »
"Perhaps there was a lack of faith in Indigenous authority, a deficit arising from their own Australian attitudes towards native people both at home and in their territories"
The Australian fleet, headed by the flagship HMAS Australia, enters Simpson Harbour, Rabaul, 12 September 1914 (AWM)
| Tok Piksa | Edited extracts from an article
BIELEFELD, GERMANY - At the time of the Australian takeover, the capital of German New Guinea, Rabaul, was described by AL Epstein in his book Matupit as "not so much a town as a tropical garden, dotted about with government offices, business premises, and bungalows.
“The avenues were carefully laid out and planted with Poinciana and Casuarina trees, the latter creating the feeling, as one visitor many years later was to describe it, of looking down the nave of a cathedral half a mile long."
Continue reading "The awkward takeover of German New Guinea" »
Legislation will need to spell out the terms of Indigenous Treaties to ensure consistency with Australia's constitution and laws relating to land and access rights. This is not impossible but is bound to be complex and contentious
ADELAIDE - The history of Australian governments in dealing with Australia’s Indigenous peoples is very dismal indeed.
The now departed and unlamented Liberal-National Party government continued this tradition whereby weasel words were deemed an adequate substitute for meaningful action.
Continue reading "Indigenous treaties worth all the problems" »
The ‘designed to fail’ policies that glisten with promises come to nought in delivery because the Whitefella wants to be able to control, constrain and interfere with the Blackfella’s interests
New South Wales Mounted Police attack Aboriginal people, Waterloo Creek, 1838
TUMBY BAY – I’m currently writing a history of the South Australian Aboriginal Heritage Branch, based in Adelaide, where I was employed between 1974 and 1994.
It’s tentatively called ‘Full Circle’ – the title describing a 20-year trajectory in which the Branch went from virtually nothing to journey through a period of high productivity and public recognition before finally looping back to irrelevance and obscurity, buried in a high rise city building.
Continue reading "The unvirtuous circle of SA's Blackfella affairs" »
The Solomons both lost and found its way politically and economically. Part of its journey were mismanagement and corruption, and the ‘tension years’, when the nation came to the brink of anarchy
Honiara is a corruption of the Malaitan word, nahona`ara, meaning facing the place where the southeast winds meet the land (Jenny Scott)
| DevPolicy Blog
Honiara: Village-City of Solomon Islands by Clive Moore, ANU Press, May 2022. More information here. ISBN 9781760465070 (online). Download or read the book free online here
BRISBANE - Like most cities, Honiara is bound by its geography, history and culture. In my new book, I explore these relationships and how they have created the city we see today.
Military bases in the Solomon Islands are in the news, although most people seem to have forgotten that Honiara began as a World War II battle ground and military base, initially Japanese and then American.
Continue reading "Solomons melting pot: The Honiara story" »
'John Teosin was a complex personality and an enormously deep thinker. He was ahead of his time in many ways. Among the living dead, John Teosin shan’t be forgotten'
COMPILED & EDITED BY KEITH JACKSON
| With some useful references from Dr Robin Hide
NOOSA - The John Teosin Highway (aka the Buka ring road) connects villages along the east coast of Buka Island with Bougainville’s commercial and administrative centre, Buka Town.
The ring road plays a vital role in people’s lives as well as moving them from one place to another.
Continue reading "Revisiting Hahalis: Cult or flawed crusade?" »
The National Geographic, always a product of its time, remains an amazing pictorial record of Papua New Guinea over nearly 100 years
E Thomas Gilliard's 'Miramar children' (or were they?) of 1955 (National Geographic)
MORISSET – The photograph above was taken during E Thomas Gilliard's bird hunting expedition to the Papua New Guinea Highlands in 1955.
The story of the expedition, together with many spectacular photographs, was published in National Geographic magazine in the same year under the headline, 'To the Land of the Headhunters'.
Continue reading "National Geographic’s long affair with PNG" »
Port Moresby, 19th century - from The Colonial Portfolio (The Werner Company London)
MELBOURNE - Names often change with time but, after nearly 50 years of independence and 150 years after the arrival of Captain John Moresby, the name of Papua New Guinea’s remains Port Moresby.
Prior the arrival of the first British sailors in 1873, and still today, the traditional inhabitants lived in a few small villages on the harbour shores with many houses built over its waters.
Continue reading "Port Moresby Harbour is not Fairfax Harbour" »
The RSL Cenotaph, a clear sky and a calm morning provided the perfect setting for this year's Anzac Day dawn service in Rabaul
RABAUL – In a year that marks the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Rabaul, more than 80 people attended Rabaul’s Anzac Day dawn service this year, which was hosted by the Rabaul Historical Society at the RSL Cenotaph.
The battle saw a small Australian overwhelmed by Japanese forces in late 1942 and it became the as the main Japanese naval base for the Solomon Islands and New Guinea campaigns.
Continue reading "Rabaul, Anzac & memories of war & peace" »
John J Murphy - district commissioner, war hero falsely accused, lexicographer and author
WARREN ‘WAZZA’ TURNER
PORT MACQUARIE, NSW - I was far from a star player when I ran out for Kone Tigers in the early sixties. I really just made up the numbers, so I don’t deserve a star billing.
When the Papua versus New Guinea rugby league teams were selected, I thought I might be an outside chance of maybe making the seconds.
Continue reading "Home & away: fragments from an old photo" »
Stanley Gene blasts through the pack (Love Rugby League)
When Dr Clarrie Burke died in January 2019, there was an outpouring of grief in Papua New Guinea and Australia for a man who spent his life “in the service of educating and uplifting others”, as one PNG Attitude reader wrote. This article was published in September 2012 in Una Voce, the journal of the PNG Association of Australia (since renamed Kundu), titled ‘The times they began a’changing’ - KJ
BRISBANE - The time: 3 pm; date: August 14; year: 1960.
Anyone living in or visiting Port Moresby in the hours leading up to that time would have reckoned with the endless unbroken lines of cars and swollen streams of ‘native’* people on foot being directed by traffic police from both sides of Hubert Murray Highway into Lahara Avenue.
Continue reading "How PNG rugby league routed racism" »
John Guise - "The first Papuan to make a political mark and a true pioneer of nationhood"
| AAP Archive | 28 August 2012
SYDNEY - A little-known role of the most remarkable Papuan of his generation should be recalled during the commemorations marking the 70th anniversary of the battle of Milne Bay - Japan's first defeat on land in World War II.
John Guise, the first Papuan to make a political impact, didn't mind a bit of boasting, especially if it involved cricket and the unbeaten 253 he once smashed which was, and may still be, a record for Milne Bay first grade.
Continue reading "Remembering the remarkable John Guise" »
Woman resists police during the confrontation at Rorovana, 1969 (Sydney Sun)
BILL BROWN MBE
THE CHRONICLE CONTINUES - On 28 July 1969, Australia’s minister for external territories Charles CE (Ceb) Barnes approved the issue of CRA’s three new Bougainville leases.
The terminology that defined the locations of the areas required was particular.
They were “leases for mining purposes” and the area was “approximately 400 acres of Rorovana land for laydown areas, construction camp and general accommodation …. 194 acres south of Willys Knob for aggregate, and the first section—approximately eight miles—of the east coast road.”
Continue reading "A Kiap’s Chronicle: 32 - A prime ministerial intervention" »
Papuan Governor Lukas Enembe (centre) meets Russian Ambassador to Indonesia Lyudmila Vorobyeva in Jakarta (Tribun Manado)
BRISBANE - Russian president Vladimir Putin has been invited by Papuan governor Lukas Enembe to visit the Indonesian province later this year.
The invitation was extended when Enembe met Russian Ambassador to Indonesia, Lyudmila Vorobyeva, last week and has triggered heated debate in social media.
Speculation is also rife about whether Indonesia — as chair of the G20 group of nations — will invite President Putin to attend the global forum in Bali later this year.
Continue reading "Papuan hope is legacy of long dead Russian" »
Singirok had just been sacked and everyone was jumpy when his bodyguard, Corporal Allen, pulled a pistol on a soldier who arrived unexpectedly at Murray Barracks. He said he just wanted food (Andrew Meares)
RAE KATAHA SMART
A Matter of Conscience: Operation Rausim Kwik by Major-General Jerry Singirok, Partridge Publishing, Singapore, February 2022, 636 pages. Available from Amazon: hardcover $100, paperback $72.95 or email Rae Smart here for more information
TEWANTIN QLD – At last the book by Major-General Jerry Singirok on the Bougainville conflict and the Sandline Affair, ‘Operation Rausim Kwik’, has just been released.
Written from the unique perspective of former Army commander Singirok, the book is a no holds barred account of a mutiny.
Continue reading " Mutiny that saved PNG: Singirok’s new book" »
Russian troops ford a stream at the Battle of Tannenberg in what is now Poland, August 1914. The battle lasted five days and ended in a German victory (Popperfoto)
NORTHUMBRIA, UK - In 1973, Kaiyer Auwin, a fight leader of Milep village in Jiwaka, let me into his inner thoughts.
Kaiyer, who had once carried a spear against early explorer and prospector Jim Taylor, told me he could scarcely believe the benefits that followed the Kiap Administration’s subjugation of everyday inter-clan fighting.
Continue reading "Tribes of Europe readying for war" »
Something of a metaphor. Ulli Beier with monkey idling in the shadows on his shoulder
MELBOURNE - It is 52 years since I attended Ulli Beier’s classes in African literature at the University of Papua New Guinea.
Now as then, and like many others, my view of him remains conflicted.
Maebh Long has laid bare, eloquently, his hypocrisy and deceit which, back then, was a matter of considerable gossip, on and off campus.
Continue reading "Ulli Beier: A personal recollection" »
Soldiers of the Australian 39th Battalion, Kokoda campaign, 1942 (Australian War Memorial)
NOOSA – After graduating with a BA in history and English literature, Adrian Clack spent six years as a history teacher and school counsellor.
He then served 12 years as a police officer before, in 2017, making his passion for military history a major pursuit.
Since then Adrian has completed 15 crossings of the Kokoda Track as a guide and historian for On Track Expeditions.
Continue reading "The remarkable Doc Vernon, doctor to the troops " »
The first printed plan of Port Moresby was compiled from surveys made in July and August 1886 by Walter R Guthbertson
| From a story originally published in
the Papua New Guinea Post-Courier
Eda Moresby: Our Moresby by John Brooksbank, K250 each (K200 each for five or more). To Australia: $100 + $15 post. Link Facebook and find Eda Moresby here or email here
PORT MORESBY – ‘Only in PNG!’ People might think this catch-all phrase for our country’s extraordinary quirks is a relatively recent addition to our lexicon.
But if the outrageous stories in John Brooksbank’s new book, ‘Eda Moresby’ (Motu for ‘Our Moresby’), are anything to go by, the expression would have applied way back to before Papua New Guinea existed.
Continue reading "The amazing, absurd & shocking story of Port Moresby" »
ADELAIDE - The article by Baka Bina, ‘The Taxing Art of Translation’, has recently stimulated much comment and discussion in PNG Attitude.
Accomplished writers like Michael Dom, Daniel Kumbon, Phil Fitzpatrick and others have offered their own insights and perspectives on the problems inherent in translating Tok Pisin into English.
Continue reading "Tok Pisin: A language on history's march" »
NEW YORK - Bernard Narokobi, who died in March 2010 at the age of 72 after a short illness, was a political and jurisprudential philosopher of great seriousness and stature. That makes my memories of his irrepressible irreverence especially sweet.
One such memory: Bernard taking his afternoon nap on the wall to wall carpeting of the Law Reform Commission’s way too elegant offices.
The Commission was Bernard’s brainchild, established at independence by Papua New Guinea’s Constitution – a document full of Bernard’s views and ideas – to try to infuse the legal system of the new nation with Melanesian custom.
Continue reading "Narokobi: The man who knew what might have been" »
Yamin Kogoya - "Papuans have been dislocated from the centre of their cultural worldview and placed on the fringes of the grand colonial narrative"
CANBERRA - The colonial notion of ‘civilising primitive Papuans’ has distorted Papuan perceptions of the world and themselves.
This distortion began with how New Guinea and its people were described in early colonial literature: unintelligent pygmies, cannibals and pagan savages – people devoid of value.
Not only did this depiction foster a racist outlook but it misrepresented reality as it was experienced and understood by Papuans for thousands of years.
Continue reading "Capturing the mind: Anatomy of a Papuan genocide" »
Sir Hubert Murray's headstone at Badihagwa Cemetery - a great administrator who preferred to be on patrol rather than in Port Moresby
This is an edited version of a story published in Una Voce (now PNG Kundu), the journal of the Papua New Guinea Association of Australia, on 16 September 2015
MELBOURNE - My first interest in the old ‘European Cemetery’ at Badihagwa dates back to the late 1980s.
At that time, with my friend and fellow former kiap, Dave Henton, I decided to find the grave of Papua’s former Lieutenant Governor, Sir John Hubert Plunkett (‘Judge’) Murray (1861-1940).
Continue reading "The saga of Judge Murray's grave" »
ADELAIDE - Robert Forster’s recent article on the pacification of the Goilala region set me thinking about why the imposition of Pax Australiana in Papua New Guinea was so strikingly different to the colonial processes followed in South America, Africa and South East Asia.
By way of context, readers need to understand that European imperialism was almost invariably imposed by force, often with catastrophic results for the indigenous population involved.
Continue reading "Pax Australiana: A most peaceful colonisation" »
Gough Whitlam on the day of his government's dismissal on 11 November 1975. He died in October 2014 aged 98
NOOSA – I am, after a short stay in hospital, back home, still feeling a bit poorly – but that is my normal state.
You should also know I’m in something of an intemperate mood.
However, I’m feeling well and agreeable enough to manage this short compilation for readers too young or too senile to recall.
Continue reading "What did Whitlam ever do for us?" »
BILL BROWN MBE
THE CHRONICLE CONTINUES - The Bougainville operations of Conzinc Rio Tinto Australia (CRA) had dominated Australian government and Territory Administration thinking from 1964, but that all changed in September 1968.
The trigger was a report by the Australian Broadcasting Commission that broadcast details of a meeting hosted in Port Moresby by two Bougainville members of the House of Assembly, Paul Lapun and Donatus Mola.
Continue reading "A Kiap’s Chronicle: 31 - Propaganda & confrontation" »
Patrol Officer Roy Edwards and police with a group of manacled villagers, Kunimaipa section, Goilala Sub-District, late 1940s (photo previously unpublished)
NORTHUMBRIA, UK – Roy Edwards was an uncompromising kiap (patrol officer), not fond of paperwork and with his own way of bringing pacification to the warring tribes of Papua New Guinea.
He patrolled the Kunimaipa section of the Goilala region for months on end and was ultimately successful in erasing a traditional payback murder spiral that led to dozens of deaths each year.
The perpetuation of payback was an insurmountable obstacle to securing the wellbeing and progress of the villages.
Continue reading "Pax Australiana & techniques of pacification" »
Traditional upland gardens near Wapenamanda
TUMBY BAY - Like many liklik kiaps (cadet patrol officers), my first couple of patrols in the Papua New Guinea Highlands involved the construction and maintenance of roads.
The idea was to get the young men out amongst the local people so they could quickly learn Tok Pisin and also find out if they could cope with roughing it in the bush.
Continue reading "Can be darn cold up in those mountains" »
Men of Enga (Joe Herman)
SEATTLE - The word arrived quickly that Pambene, a cousin in neighbouring Pumas village in Enga Province, had been assaulted and severely injured by tribesmen over a land dispute.
As expected, my oldest brother Yandapae and two cousins retaliated and forcibly took a large pig from the culprits as compensation.
Continue reading "My father’s dilemma: when cultures collide" »
The Class of '68: Cadet patrol officers induction course at Kwikila (Bob Welsh)
ANDREW LESLIE PHILLIPS
From Assignment Papua New Guinea: 1968-75
Link to more writing in Andrew’s Note Books
NEW YORK - Advertising was not my first career choice. I’d wanted to be a traveller and a journalist. But I couldn’t get a job in journalism because I didn’t have a university degree.
Advertising was my next choice - it was creative and better paid than journalism but I never got to the “better paid” part.
Continue reading "PNG landfall – the dawn of adventure" »
Michael Dom - "I completely reject 'Post-Colonial Literature' as a valid category for considering Papua Niuginian literary works"
LAE - Post-colonial literature is a stupid title. But I do understand the objective of those academics determined to force us writers to accept it.
They see it as a starting point which, while seemingly logical in an historical time frame, provides a false indication of where our personal creativity and the creativity of our people really began.
Continue reading "'Post-colonial Literature' is a stupid title" »