DOBES Archive

In this session it is shown how fermented breadfruit is made which serves as a basis of many traditional Marquesan dishes (e.g. 'popoi'). It shows old and newer techniques of traditional maa-preparation. In former times, 'maa' "fermented breadfruit" was fermented and stored in large earth pits. In this documentation the fermentation and storage of breadfruit was undertaken in a recipient made out of plaited coconut leaves and banana leaves. The basic process of making fermented breadfruit remained to be the traditional way (process of ripening and peeling breadfruits etc.). In this session it was also documented how to plait coconut leaves generally explaining three different techniques used for different purposes. The documentary also depicts traditional tool-making made out of shells for peeling ripened breadfruits.
This describes the doings of the spirit Makeka on Nuku Hiva island. Makeka was said to be a so-called 'veinehae', a spirit or ancestor god who protected the hunters on To'ovi'i plateau and in Nuku Ataha. After the hunt at sunset, people had to put meat offerings for Makeka on trees. The next day these offerings were gone according to the narrator. (see also 'Makeka-Mi')
Document describes and shows preparation of the medicinal uses of ginger. It particularily describes the effects for women after child-birth and when menstruating.
Document on the preparation of an indigenous cake or pudding made out of green unripe bananas. The document shows two ways of preparing the cake/pudding.
This text explain briefly some birth rites, namely what Marquesans did with the umbilical cord after birth giving.
This short session explains words in the Hina poem in which Hina escapes on a turtle (see link)
This short session explains further words in the Hina poem in which Hina escapes on a turtle (see link)
In this session we hear a traditional Marquesan song called ru'u. This ru'u laments the loss of the cultural heritage.
This session consists of a song text about Tahia Makemake from Hakahetau (Ua Pou). Tahia Makemake has found a water hole which makes it possible to dive to Hiva 'Oa an island in the South Marquesas. Tahia organises, to the great displeasure of her father, a feast with her friends; during the feast she dives down the water hole and never returns.
In this session it is shown how juice of the noni fruit is made. This is a new and personalised technique of the consultant, no wide-spread or traditional technique throughout the Marquesas. The noni-plant was and is still used for traditional plant medicine. Because of its healing powers discovered by foreign commercial pharmacists for themselves in recent years, it has not only been commercialised in the outside world, but it has also become a popular natural medication for the indigenous population. The noni-fruit has also become one of the major cash crops in the Marquesas.
This is the story of Here, the last man eaten on Nuku Hiva island. Here, a man from the Hapa'a valley (Nuku Hiva, near Taipivai), went to Anaho (northern coast of Nuku Hiva) to get some medicine (donkey hairs). There , a cannibal from Anaho made him drunk with koko-schnapps, and then stabbed him in the back. Later on he was eaten by people from Anaho and Hatiheu. Details of how the man was eaten are given.
Poem about the goddess Hina riding on a turtle. In Marquesan mythology Hina originates from Motopu on Tahuata island (South Marquesas).
This is a tradional Marquesan song (rari/ru'u) which sings about the happenings in the Kueenui legend (see link). In the legend of Kueenui, the "big eel", Kueenui, dwelling on Nuku Hiva in the river of Taipivai, meets Kueeiti, the "small eel" from Hanavave on Fatu Iva. After having tasted the food of Kueenui, Kueeiti suggests to go to Fatu Iva where there is much more delicious and nice smelling food. They leave for Fatu Iva. When arriving at Hanavave (Fatu Iva) Kueenui, actually quite large in size cannot swim up to Kueeiti's water hole. He gets stuck in the river bed and the water consequently does not flow down to the village of Hanavave anymore. Puzzled by this the Hanavave people go to have a look what is going on. They find the big eel and kill him. Kueeiti manages to escape to the sea.
Consultant now sings the poem (see link).
This is a short poem about Hina who originated according to Marquesan mythology from Motopu on Tahuata island (=South Marquesas).
This is a documentary on one form of preparing cooked breadfruit paste. It is shown in detail of how 'ka'aku ke'eke'e' "black breadfruit" is prepared by mashing the cooked breadfruit with a stone pestle and mixing the breadfruit with carcoaled/burnt skin of the breadfruit. It is explained which varieties of breadfruit have to be taken and how they are prepared beforehand. In general the documentary also shows the traditional techniques of preparing cooked breadfruit.
This is the legend of Keikahanui, a warrior from Nuku Hiva. Keikahanui was originally from the valley of Hatihe'u belonging to the Taipi tribe. Keikahanui's wife comes from the valley of Hakaui inhabitated by the Tei'i tribe which is in constant warfare with the Taipi tribe. Keikahanui's wife is the sister of a warrior of Hakaui. They live near Hakau'i. In this version, his brother-in-law tells Keikahanui one day that they are going to war with the Taipi at Hatihe'u. The Hakau'i people leave for Hatihe'u, and shortly after leaving, Keikahanui is on his way to Hatihe'u, taking shortcuts through the mountains, to warn his people about the planned attack on Hatihe'u by the Hakau'i warriors. Keikahanui fights the battle with his people who win over the Hakau'i. After the battle Keikahanui rushes back to Hakau'i in order not to be discovered by the Hakau'i. After his return to Hakau'i Keikahanui gets sea urchins from the reef and puts it on his body/leg; the sea urchins quickly start to develop a very unpleasant smell and he pretends to have been ill. In this version, the narrator does not know precisely what had happened to Keikahanui in the end. He tells us that his brother-in-law recognised him during the battle at Hatihe'u, but the narrator thinks that he fled with his wife to Hatihe'u and lived there till the end of his days.
This session contains traditional Marquesan songs called ru'u or rari often depicting events of the past (e.g. arrival of German fleet during First World War, annexation of Marquesas by the French etc.). In this session the consultant sings raris which were changed under the influence of Tahitian. The consultants sings the original versions of four songs.