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Life in Lesu [electronic resource] : the study of a Melanesian society in New Ireland / by Hortense Powdermaker ; foreword by Dr. Clark Wissler ...

By: Powdermaker, Hortense, 1903-1970.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Co., Inc., [1933]Description: 352 p., plates : ill., plans ; 23 cm.Subject(s): Ethnology -- Papua New Guinea -- New Ireland | Ethnology | Lesu, New Ireland (Papua New Guinea) | Papua New GuineaAdditional physical formats: OriginalDDC classification: 572.9936 Online resources: Fulltext available via EBSCOhost - Shibboleth login required Also issued in print.Summary: "Lesu is a village on the east coast of New Ireland about eighty miles from the northern end of the island. New Ireland is part of the Bismarck Archipelago is in that part of the South Seas known ethnologically as Melanesia and is now under the political mandate of Australia. The island is long and narrow, about two hundred miles in length and an average width of twenty miles, except at its widest part in the extreme south, where it is approximately fifty miles across. It is divided into nine linguistic districts, in each one of which a different dialect is spoken. These dialects, while related, are not mutually intelligible. The linguistic unit in which I worked was comprised of five villages, Lesu, Ambwa, Langania, Libba; and Tandis, with a total population of about twelve hundred. It covered approximately twelve miles on the east coast north of the centre of New Ireland. I took up my residence in Lesu, which has a population of 232, and there did most of my work, although I visited other villages to attend various rites and secure ethnological information. Occasionally I went to a village in another linguistic district for some special ceremony, but such excursions were infrequent. I spent ten and a half months in Lesu, from March 1929 to February 1930. My field technique consisted of several procedures. I worked with the most intelligent natives, men and women, as informants. We had long sessions at my house, when I secured magic and other ethnological data privately with one or two individuals at a time. Then, too, I attended every ceremony that took place during my stay and had long discussions about the rite after it occurred. I never went uninvited, but I was invited to everything. This was true also for purely masculine occasions such as the men's feasts. To these a couple of the important old men would escort me. I would sit quietly to one side, munching a banana or taro, and taking notes. My notebook and pencil accompanied me everywhere, and the natives took it quite for granted that I should write everything down. I explained that my memory was not good enough to remember everything they told me or that I saw, and so I wrote it down. This they understood, and some of them said that if they had writing, they would remember much better too"--Chapter. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).
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Printed in Great Britain.

Includes index.

"Lesu is a village on the east coast of New Ireland about eighty miles from the northern end of the island. New Ireland is part of the Bismarck Archipelago is in that part of the South Seas known ethnologically as Melanesia and is now under the political mandate of Australia. The island is long and narrow, about two hundred miles in length and an average width of twenty miles, except at its widest part in the extreme south, where it is approximately fifty miles across. It is divided into nine linguistic districts, in each one of which a different dialect is spoken. These dialects, while related, are not mutually intelligible. The linguistic unit in which I worked was comprised of five villages, Lesu, Ambwa, Langania, Libba; and Tandis, with a total population of about twelve hundred. It covered approximately twelve miles on the east coast north of the centre of New Ireland. I took up my residence in Lesu, which has a population of 232, and there did most of my work, although I visited other villages to attend various rites and secure ethnological information. Occasionally I went to a village in another linguistic district for some special ceremony, but such excursions were infrequent. I spent ten and a half months in Lesu, from March 1929 to February 1930. My field technique consisted of several procedures. I worked with the most intelligent natives, men and women, as informants. We had long sessions at my house, when I secured magic and other ethnological data privately with one or two individuals at a time. Then, too, I attended every ceremony that took place during my stay and had long discussions about the rite after it occurred. I never went uninvited, but I was invited to everything. This was true also for purely masculine occasions such as the men's feasts. To these a couple of the important old men would escort me. I would sit quietly to one side, munching a banana or taro, and taking notes. My notebook and pencil accompanied me everywhere, and the natives took it quite for granted that I should write everything down. I explained that my memory was not good enough to remember everything they told me or that I saw, and so I wrote it down. This they understood, and some of them said that if they had writing, they would remember much better too"--Chapter. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

Also issued in print.

Electronic reproduction. Washington, D.C. : American Psychological Association, 2011. Available via World Wide Web. Access limited by licensing agreement. s2011 dcunns

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