nmitio at lcs.unitech.ac.pg
Tue Oct 26 12:19:20 EST 2004
----- Original Message -----
From: Eva Lindström <evali at ling.su.se>
To: <mihalic at anu.edu.au>
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 6:48 PM
Subject: Re: [Mihalic] Witchcraft
As Eva Lindstrom said about New Ireland:
>In New Ireland it's poisen all round, occasionally magic (mejik,
>medsik), but magic is probably for slightly different activities.
>I haven't heard sanguma or wiskrap or puripuri or soseri or
>marila in the village.
>Bagarapim is probably more common than poisenim as a transitive
>verb, perhaps especially in an impersonal construction (ol i
>bagarapim em = he was killed by sorcery), and that's the main
>interpretation of bagarapim with a human object (if it's a woman
>it can mean rape too, bagarapim meri / holimpasim meri).
It is also true in Morobe, and in particular among the Biangai of Wau.
Despite the common, free and casual use of English words in daily Tok Pisin,
usage of words such as 'wiskrap' medjik (mezik), and 'soseri'.are not
comonly used by ordinary people.
'Bagarapin' is commonly used for any form of witchcraft and socery.
'Bagarapin' is also used for rape and incest. In the Biangai vanacular,
kaire = nogut (bad), kelemia = did. Kaire kelmia, among others is used for
rape/incest and witchcraft. One could say A nogutim B, but instead bagarapim
is the commonly used word (i.e. A gabarapim B).
'Poisen'/'poisenim' and 'sanguma/sangumaim' are alternatives after
bagarapim. My reading in magic and witchcraft is limited, but it is my first
time to come across 'wiskrapt'.
I think the spritual world is very much a reality for most Melaneisan
societies' cosmological views and therefore concepts and terminologies are
readily available for use. It is the absence of those concepts and terms
which easily give way to borrowing/adapting of foreign terms.
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