Introduction / History
There are at least 1000 speakers of the Atas Mandobo language. They reside within the province of Papua, Indonesia. The Atas Mandobo people live by forest gathering, hunting, and farming traditionally. The men usually hunt while the women prepare sago, garden, and maintain the home. The Atas Mandobo homeland is about 100 meters above sea level. Winikit and the Atas Mandobo area can be reached on foot or by a 2-3 hour road trip from Kanggewot when there has not been a lot of rain. From Mindiptana, Winikit can also be reached by canoe. The main food is sago but sago worms as well as fish and animals killed in the hunt supplement the peoples' diet. Forest plants and garden vegetables also add greens to the Atas Mandobo diet.
There is an elementary school in Winikit but it needs teachers. No modern medicine workers are in the area and the locals often ask traditional "doctors" for medicines. The Atas Mandobo people frequently suffer from malaria, tuberculosis, and cholera symptoms. Machetes, steel axes, bows and arrows, spears, and shovels are common tools of use. Telephones and electric lines have not reached the area, but the government has installed a satellite television dish. Many are registered as Catholics or Christians, but traditional religious influences are strong. Because many are Catholics, in the villages there are rosary prayer activities in May and October, and a road-to-the-cross mass right before Easter.
|Profile Source: Anonymous|