Trobriand Cricket: An Ingenious Response to Colonialism

Gary Kildea, Jerry Leach. 1956. Australia. vo English. 54’

An extraordinary ethnographic document of the modifications made by the residents of the Trobriand Islands, in Papua New Guinea, to the traditional British game of cricket. In response to colonialism the islanders have changed the game into an outlet for mock warfare, community interchange, tribal rivalry, sexual innuendo and a lot of riotous fun. Intercut sequences explaining traditional cricket indicate how much the game has been altered; historical footage and commentary review the history of British colonialism in the area. This is not a glimpse of a disappearing culture, but a piece of propaganda by indigenous Trobrianders in favour of their national game which, with good reason, they consider to be far superior to the English "rubbish" from which it was derived.