The Tolai people of the East New Britain Province of Papua New Guinea have a traditional form of shell money (tabu) which they have been using as their currency in economic and ceremonial exchanges ever since it was invented. This project proposes to document the cultural understandings and knowledge systems associated with the tabu shell money. By collaborating with a local indigenous knowledge holder, we will document, in video, photography and audio, the material knowledge that is associated with the process of production and the manner of its use of the shell money in and amongst the Tolai people.


Andrew Moutu

Martin Maden

Location of Research:
East New Britain, Papua New Guinea

Host Institution:
Papua New Guinea National Museum & Art Gallery



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