Yumi olsem wantok tasol: An article from Rabaul News, 1948

Rabaul News was a Pidgin-language newsletter published with support from the Department of Education in the Territory of Papua-New Guinea in the late 1940s and 1950s. Like many such papers at the time, it aspired to bring a reliable news source to the indigenous residents of the Territory, encourage adult education, and explain (or justify) […]

Notes on the Sociology of Wantoks in Papua New Guinea

Anthropological Forum 25(1): 3-20

This paper was selected for the 2015 article prize of the Australian Anthropological Society. It is available as an Open Access article from Anthropological Forum. Abstract: In Melanesian pidgin languages, wantok means someone with a similar origin as oneself, and connotes a familiarity and mutual solidarity. Wantok has also become a watchword of politics and […]

Where else are there wantoks?

Throughout PNG people talk about wantoks, people who have a relationship based on affinity of origin or other shared trait. Urban places are marked by wantok groups and wantok networks. Also people invoke a ‘wantok system’ as a model for how institutions function (or don’t as the case may be). Do other places have wantoks […]