Talk:Tikopia

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Material removed[edit]

The following material was removed or sentences adapted. Without access to the Firth book myself, I cannot judge whether what is said is an accurate portrayal of his writing. I do think it is an interesting overview, however, so if someone can verify it, I would suggest re-adding it somehow. BrainyBabe 14:09, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

New Zealand anthropologist, Raymond Firth, who lived on Tikopia in 1928 and 1929 found a "cult of virginity" and widespread infanticide among the islanders, whom he described as gentle and loving. Reproductive policy was particularly restrictive, however: only the eldest son in each family was allowed to have children and when an unwanted child was born, the face of the child was "turned down", a euphemism for infanticide. The most common method was the deliberate blocking of the infant's nasal passages by an adult's fingers. Today, Firth's "cult of virginity" is long since gone. While the reasons for this might be regarded as due to the introduction of Christianity, there is an important demographic element as well: many of the young men leave the island, heading to either the Russell Islands or the national capital, Honiara, in search of work. As a result of this outflow of men, population control is less necessary.

Infantizide[edit]

Added "citation needed" for this and will remove any mention from the article fairly soon unless a reliable source is found. Beware that the Anthropology of the Southern Seas is a sore tale full of epic scale blunders of "famous" anthropologists. The infantizide claim is potentially particularly offending so we do not want to spread it unless rigorously proven. Richiez (talk) 16:38, 9 January 2010 (UTC)

Moving the fragment to here, the implicated unreserved claim that infanticide was widespread and normal in Polynesian culture is frankly wrong. The reference should be probably to "west polynesian low island culture" but even then it needs some rewrite.Richiez (talk) 01:12, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

The influence of Polynesian culture is close to local memory: not long ago, widespread infanticide[citation needed] was as natural and necessary as sharing food and learning to dance. Because of these population control methods, resulting in zero population growth and a sustainable economy, pre-contact Tikopian society was described as idyllic, even utopian. Its culture was strongly communal: the sea was full of fish, the land grew excellent food, and the people supported one another.