Unity through Culture

Christian Suhr, Ton Otto
Baluan Island, Denmark 2012 | 58 Min. | OmeU
Q&A with: Ton Otto

Soanin Kilan­git is deter­mined to unite the people and attract inter­na­tion­al tourism through the revival of cul­ture on Baluan Island in the South Pacif­ic. He orga­nizes the largest cul­tur­al fes­ti­val ever held on the island. But some tra­di­tion­al lead­ers argue that Baluan never had cul­ture. Cul­ture comes from the white man and is now destroy­ing their old tra­di­tion. Others, how­ev­er, take the fes­ti­val as a wel­come oppor­tu­ni­ty to revolt against ’70 years of cul­tur­al oppres­sion’ by Chris­tian­i­ty. A strug­gle to define the past, present and future of Baluan cul­ture erupts to the sound of thun­der­ing log drum rhythms.