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Lise Dobrin
University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA 22903-4833)
Preservation and Publication of Bernard Narokobi's "History of Wautogik Village" Manuscript

Preparation of a digital publication of Bernard Narokobi’s “History of Wautogik Village” Manuscript (Papua New Guinea)

This project will digitally contextualize, preserve, and disseminate the History of Wautogik Village, a typescript manuscript written by the Papua New Guinean author and intellectual Bernard Narokobi. This resource is vulnerable to being lost because of its fragility and because of the endangered nature of the knowledge necessary to interpret it. The manuscript orients readers to the political ethos of Melanesian village life and provides insight into Narokobi's ideas about Melanesian sovereignty. The project will produce an open-access digital display of the text with annotations and links to audiovisual materials to make it accessible to contemporary audiences. The digital publication will adhere to archival best practices and traditional Melanesian cultural practices that call for presentation of alternative perspectives, especially from elders. Digital publication will thus provide a model for the written transmission of knowledge in historically oral cultures.

[Grant products][Media coverage]

Project fields:
Cultural History; Folklore and Folklife; Intellectual History


Research Programs

$60,000 (approved)
$60,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2020 – 7/31/2021