Meeting the Mendi

Terence E. Hays

in Ethnographic Presents

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 1992 | ISBN: 9780520077454
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912342 | DOI:
Meeting the Mendi

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This chapter discusses A. P. Elkin's interest in a settlement of aborigines on the outskirts of a New South Wales country town. It appeared he had sent a female student to a place called Mendi, in the Southern Highlands of New Guinea. The Highlands, unadministered and virtually unexplored until after the war, were at last being opened up. The Australian National University, under S. F. Nadel, was placing students there, and so obviously Sydney had to do the same, and this young woman was sent there in 1952. Mendi had been “discovered,” en passant, by Karius and Champion in a 1936 patrol; there was another brief contact with a survey expedition in 1938, and then nothing until the first administration post was established there in 1950, with the Methodists setting up a mission a few months later.

Keywords: A. P. Elkin; aborigines; New South Wales; Mendi; Highlands; New Guinea; Australian National University; S. F. Nadel; Methodists

Chapter.  16361 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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