Rather than index culture group, which is not well-standardized in PNG, the name
of the local language
used in the village from which each story originates is indexed. The names for the language index are
primarily based on Dutton (1973), Laycock (1973), Wurm (1975), Wurm (1976), Wurm and
Hattori (1983), and Z’graggen (1975). Generally, only distinct languages are indexed, not dialects.
The current count of languages in the index is 247. This represents 35% of Papua New Guinea’s
total language count (about 700, according to Wurm, 1985). There are probably stories in the manuscripts from many culture groups that have not elsewhere had their folk tales published.
All of PNG’s provinces are represented as well as one story each from the Torres Strait of
Australia and Biak in Irian Jaya. Some provinces are better represented than others, particularly
those in which Tok Pisin is the lingua franca.
Geoff P. Smith, author of Growing Up with Tok Pisin (2002): “Monumental”
Rundbrief (February 2002): “Zunächst einmal ist die riesige Arbeitsleistung bemerkenswert.” [First of all this enormous work is remarkable.]
Swag of Yarns: Australia’s National Storytelling Magazine (Winter 2002): “A parcel of gold” “This remarkable collection of ancestor stories from Papua New Guinea’s oral tradition is for serious collectors and lovers of oral stories-gold to the storyteller.” “Amazing”
I have described my technique for determining the languages associated with PNG villages
Despite my substantial effort at this, there are still villages that I have been unable to precisely locate. These are located
here. If you know where any of these are, please
I have been unable to locate issue number 1138 from 1996 of Wantok. Please please let me know if you can send me the ancestor story from this issue.
Moore, Carmella. C. & Romney, A. Kimball (1994). Material culture, geographic propinquity, and linguistic affiliation on the north coast of New Guinea: a reanalysis of Welsch, Terrell, and Nadolski (1992). American Anthropologist 96: 370-396.
Roberts, Jr., John M., Moore, Carmella. C. & Romney, A. Kimball (1995). Predicting similarity in material culture among New Guinea villages from propinquity and language. Current
Anthropology 36: 769-788. [including replies]