Throughout the film, the New Guineans were treated like commodities. Right from the beginning we could see tourists taking photos or filming everything and every person they see. These tourists appeared to think that because they were of a civilized country they could objectify the New Guineans. They (the tourists) had the right to do as they pleased, for example, without even asking the children if they minded having a photo taken of them, a tourist walked up next to them and instructed her fellow tourist to take a picture of her with the kids.
|'Primitive' rituals captured|
Furthermore, these tourists appeared to have an obsession with capturing the New Guineans as “unchanging and as more primitive than civilized” (Collins and Lutz 108). Due to the way New Guineans and their primitive culture was perceived, tourists appeared to have this idealization of the New Guineans as exotic beings who acted in a specific manner, wore certain clothing and vegetated on natural untouched land. Unfortunately, upon arrival these tourists found that these ‘primitives’ were, in fact, living between modern and traditional lifestyles. While they still hunted, performed ancient customs and rituals and carried out other primitive activities, a good portion of them wore regular clothing, were, to some degree, familiar with the Western culture, and exploited their culture and themselves to earn money so that they could buy their basic necessities. As a result the tourists staged most of their shots by insisting that the New Guineans must pose a certain way or chased those who still carry out traditional customs. For example, as the tourists were exploring some of the areas, a women walking while carrying her child in a sling became the target and was followed by tourists snapping away.
|The tourists constantly photographing the 'primitives'|
|Obsession with watching them to capture a 'primitive' act|
Work Cited List:Collins, Jane, and Catherine Lutz. Reading National geographic. 1st ed. Chicago: University of
Chicago Press, 1993. 89-108. Print.