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Christian Suhr

Unity through Culture

Research output: Non-textual formPictures, Video and sound recordings (digital)Research

Ethnographic film, Moesgård Film, Royal Anthropological Institute (59 min, 2011)

Soanin Kilangit is determined to unite the people and attract international tourism through the revival of culture on Baluan Island in the South Pacific. He organizes the largest cultural festival ever held on the island. But some traditional leaders argue that Baluan never had culture. Culture comes from the white man and is now destroying their old tradition. Others, however, take the festival as a welcome opportunity to revolt against '70 years of cultural oppression' by Christianity. A struggle to define the past, present and future of Baluan culture erupts to the sound of thundering log drum rhythms.

“…the various disputes that come forth during the film will provide an excellent teaching tool and springboard for myriad discussions associated with issues involving kastom, tradition, change, authenticity, performance, identity, cultural politics, exchange, and the impact of the West on traditional societies.” 

— Karen Stevenson, American Anthropologist, September 2012

Original languageEnglish
Publication year2011
Size59 min
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Bibliographical note

Awarded with "The Intangible Culture Film Prize" + "The Richard Werbner Award for Visual Ethnography"
at the Royal Anthropological Institute Festival for Ethnographic Film (London, June 2011 - World Premiere)

Broadcasted twice at Taiwan Indiginous TV (Taipei, 2011)

Screenings at film festivals and conferences:

Taiwan International Ethnographic Film Festival (Taipei, November 2011)

SVA Festival, American Anthropological Association Meeting (Montreal, November 2011)vember 2011)

Hawaii International Film Festival HIFF (Honolulu, October 2011)

The International Festival for Ethnological Film (Belgrade, October 2011)

VISCULT - Festival of Visual Culture (Joensuu, September 2011)

Days of Ethnographic Cinema (Moscow, September 2011)

The NAFA Festival (St Andrews, August 2011)

IUAES/AAS/ASAANZ Conference 2011 (Perth, July 2011)

Royal Anthropological Institute Festival for Ethnographic Film (London, June 2011 - World Premiere)

Media of output: HD Video

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