Chimbu - Settlements



In contrast to highland areas to the east, Kuman Chimbu do not arrange their houses into villages but rather have a dispersed settlement pattern Traditionally, men lived in large men's houses set on ridges for purposes of defense, apart from women, girls, and young boys. Each married woman and her unmarried daughters, young sons, and the family's pigs lived in a house that was situated some distance from the men's house and in or near the family's gardens. By situating their houses near the gardens, women were able to remain close to their work and better manage their pigs, a family's greatest economic asset. Although this housing pattern still exists to some extent, reduction in the segregation of the sexes, reduction in tribal fighting, and economic development have resulted in more men living with their families in houses that are located near coffee gardens and roads. Most Chimbu houses are oval or rectangular, with dirt floors, low thatched roofs, and walls woven from flattened reeds.

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