Gender Related Social Groups

As discussed above, gender is an important category for the Trobriand Islanders. Groups of men will go fishing, perform heavy clearing or other garden work, often upon request by an influential man who will reward their contribution, or set out to play football (soccer) or the very interesting Trobriand form of cricket against other villages, or will engage in a kula expedition. Groups of women will carry yams from the gardens to the village or, as one of the various activities of "women's clubs" (sub-organizations of the churches), travel to another village and conduct a ceremony of reciprocal gifts of food and other presents. Groups of unmarried female (kubuk-wabuya vivila) and male (kukumatuva tauwau) adolescents will receive food during ceremonies involving communal eating; married adults receive their food gifts in the village sectors (katuposula) where they live and eat in mixed-gender groups.

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