Tikopia of Melanesia - Research Paper Example

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This research paper will talk about the Tikopia of Melanesia practice different subsistence practices, their beliefs and values and their political organizations.The other name that refers to the Tikopians society is chiefdom…
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Tikopia of Melanesia
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"Tikopia of Melanesia"

Tikopia of Melanesia

Tikopia of Melanesia is known to have gone through so many changes in society. Agriculture is their key means of subsistence, and they can be referred to as the emerging agriculturalists or horticulturalists.

Tikopia of Melanesia usually practices a precise technique of agriculture. The Tikopians normally search for dried swamps and clear forests which usually provide them with trade routes, markets and land that is irrigated. The access that the group has over empty land gives them control over the resources. The Tikopia also incorporates technology into their subsistence practices. By use of up-to-date technology, the Tikopia usually incorporate agriculture which is intensive such as flood control, irrigation and terraces. In addition to this, technology has assisted the community in building roads, bridges, ports. There is ownership of technology which allows the community to have control over their distribution and production. Most men in the Tikopia society do all the hard work such as building fences, cleaning forests and most of the community’s planting processes. The women prepare food and take care of children. Both men and women play key roles in their society’s subsistence practices. The community uses redistribution and exchange of balanced reciprocals to ensure that their services and goods are transported. Balanced reciprocals exchange refers to an agreement where there is a return of an item which is equivalent to another item or one with a greater value. Redistribution refers to a tribute, an individual’s labor or the products of society, which is collected, counted, sorted and then stored for future use. Tikopia’s Cultural Aspects: Political Organization: A Tikopian village or district is usually divided into four systems of principal kin groups (Macdonald, 2000). These kin groups are referred to as the patrilineal clans. These clans are usually divided into patrilineages. These clans are not confined in a small area, since each clan has a member in each the district or a village. Each of these villages or districts has a number of households which are in one clan. The clan may be ritually or politically prevailing in the districts. This system is strongly integrated into a system of local groups and the kin which are both strongly developed into status systems. The status systems are; therefore, developed into a political form which constitutes of a rank structure where there is a chief at its apex. The patrilineages are usually headed by chiefs, known as the “maru” (Macdonald, 2000). They are the most senior of all the men and a direct descent from the ancestor’s lineages. These lineages have a significant economic, ritual and political function but usually have more significance than the “ariki”, the clan chiefs. Economic organization: Tikopia is an isolated and small chiefdom which has Read More
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