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The incorporated ground: the contemporary work of distribution in the Kutubu oil project area, Papua New Guinea

CollectionsANU Resources, Environment & Development Group (RE&D)
Title: The incorporated ground: the contemporary work of distribution in the Kutubu oil project area, Papua New Guinea
Author(s): Weiner, James
Keywords: Kutubu;Papua New Guinea;oil;petroleum revenue;distribution resources;sociality;bridewealth;control of land;clans;Foi;Fasu;komitis
Publisher: Canberra, ACT: Resource Management in Asia-Pacific Program (RMAP), Division of Pacific and Asian History, Research School for Pacific and Asian Studies, The Australian National University
Series/Report no.: Resource Management in Asia-Pacific Program (RMAP) Working Paper: No. 17
It has long been an anthropological truism that public social life throughout Papua New Guinea centres around the mechanisms and activities of distribution of a variety of resources: food, marriageable women, ceremonial wealth items such as pigs and shell valuables, and less material things such as cult formulae, sorcery and magic techniques, and songs. However, the manner in which such traditional distributive mechanisms have responded to the more recent challenge of distributing revenue from resource extraction projects throughout the country has yet to be addressed in as comprehensive a manner. I’d like to make a start in this paper by outlining some of the dimensions of distribution of petroleum revenue within the societies of the Kutubu Joint Venture’s Kutubu oil project area. Since I have carried out fieldwork exclusively with the Foi-speakers of this area since 1979, I will restrict my examples to those from the Foi, though I suspect that most of the things I say are applicable across the entire range of longhouse-based societies within the oil project area, and specifically the Fasu, the main landowners within the project area.


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