The archaeology of community on Mabuyag (Mabuiag) in the western Torres Strait, northeastern Australia

01st December 2011

WrightAR_TA73 Figure5

Beeboy Whap clearing stones away from a crocodile stone arrangement at Dabangai (published in Australian Archaeology 73:54).

Duncan Wright

This paper provides new insights into the late Holocene history of Mabuyag in western Torres Strait. It addresses a question posed by McNiven et al. (2006:75): ‘at what point [did] Mabuyag became [sic] a residential island and a separate people (i.e. the Goemulgal) with their own identity’? Using a social model of regionalisation, ‘community’ is approached using the archaeology and ethnography of four recently excavated traditional villages and one ceremonial meeting place (kod). Community emergence and development is traced over the past 1000 years through multiple fissioning events and the development of unique (often monumental) sites. Archaeology and oral histories provide insight into community restrictions, but also the formalised removal of these in particular places or circumstances.

Duncan Wright
The archaeology of community on Mabuyag (Mabuiag) in the western Torres Strait, northeastern Australia
2011
73
49-57
Article
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