Thursday, December 4, 2008



QUESTIONS: To what kinds of colonial experiences do they seem to respond? In what ways are the stereotypes acted out by the tourists in Cannibal Tours?

Cannibal Tours is one of the most effected and important films in order to understand of visual ethnography and anthropology. There are too many evaluations and reviews on this film in literature. We can see its effect on visual ethnography from its followers. Moreover, it is masterpiece because of its content. It is displaying us the classification of other and behaviors of white man or tourist in the far from their homelands. In this paper, I would like to argue that the Cannibal Tours and its alienation of native people with some certain point. I have some keywords and concepts about this topic, for instance; “globalization of native people”, “daily performances of primitive”, “desperation of natives”, “economical situations”, “other-ing process”, “colonial experiences” and finally “alienation” etc. I will discuss some points about relation between native people and tourists (I think “Cannibalist” Tourists).

I would lie to start with this, first Europeans came from Germany. German colonialism is perceived as a good approach by native people who live in New Guinea. However, they did not know that lost of their independence in a short time. Actually, I think this situation was necessary in order to understand the importance of their freedom and belongings. They were contemplating that are able to learn a lot of thing from Colonialist. But, it was not. We saw that they are exploited by colonialist people and they used by them as a source of live in their homeland. Thus, they lost their sources in order to sustain their life.
Other important point is “economical situation”, we know that they are very poor and live into indigence conditions. Already, they are not living in with free market economy. Wherefore, the area is too hidden to other areas. Therefore, they had not developed some relations with people who live in other areas among themselves. According to me, there is a dilemma in this film especially on economical situation. Wherefore, a lot of people is working in some streets of place, but they do not earn money. Why? They can only make “interchange” among themselves. Therefore, they cannot take money or something from others. But, when tourists come to place, native people can sell their products which “hand-made” or “produced” by them. Thus, they can earn money in order to sustain their life.

In this sense, “othering” process has become an important point for evaluation of situations. Because, I have remember that one woman or men says “take a photo for life”. I think this is very disgusting condition for human. We understand that they have to live along they take breathe. However, why do native people want to be other? In my estimation, native people would like to realize that “legitimate of other”. Namely, they would like to continue as another person, thence they can use as a tool of penetrate people hear with pity.
After that, I would like to take up “the globalization of native people”. In my opinion they would like to integrate their identity to other areas in order to perform of their health life and welfares. Hence, If they can realize this idea, they would not be up the pole. I think, we can accept this as a reality of them which come from our humanity dimensions. Wherefore, all people have much better condition for living with together. Basically, this is directly related with “the daily performances of primitive”. We can see that the globalization of native people is effecting to their behaviors and life.

In the same way, we know that the globalization is very important indicator in the people life in last twenty years maybe invented of internet. Because, many developed countries are supported this in order to earn much more money for them. According to me, the daily performances of primitive can be managed by colonialist and/or globalists. Moreover, I would like to ask these “Who is primitive for us in our evaluations or for globalists?” Is the other of us or anti-modern of us? In other words, “Who is modern?” Are only we? According to “who”?
In my estimation, we can determine the modern but we cannot say that certain modern people. Wherefore, all people have different ideas about modern and modern life. Therefore, we cannot make certain evaluation. In addition, should people be modern? I think this is not possible. We can be modern by our evaluations and reference points, but this cannot give us “the categorization right of modern people” in order to evaluate the others. I think, modern people live with conditions of time and they will adopt their identity to next new conditions. But, we cannot reach in the New Guinea, because there are no conditions of our times. We can find only the conditions of New Guines’s time. Therefore, we cannot evaluate them as a modern people or anti-modern. According to me; this condition is directly effecting on “desperation of native people” in their life. In the reminder of this, I will say something about their knowledge background. They do not know any information about on free market economy and globalization process in reality. Thence, they can be simple element in order to use by colonialist states and governments. So, tourists are very important source in order to earn money according to natives.

Finally in this essay, I would like to emphasis the behaviors of tourists onto native people. I think, tourists have a lot of preconceptions and wrong ideas about native people from our observations in the film. Fundamentally, this idea belongs to modern identity (and who has a modern identity or who comes from modern state by themselves) and tourists evaluate the natives by only their knowledge which comes from their culture and memory. In a sense, this is very artificial behavior for me. In as much as we decide who is modern, we must take into consideration the conditions of place and life which is there.
As a conclusion, I think, the categorization right of modern is one of the most important markers for other modern people which come from colonialist countries. They know that the modern is only themselves but this is very huge liar for me. The modern is designed or shaped by conditions of time or specials of place. Therefore, we can think with only our background which comes from our memory and past. This is very relativistic situation for pure evaluation of people conditions. We cannot reach any general information, because there are very different ideas about the society and place. The place is living place of others or anti-moderns by cannibalists and white man. The natives can be only primitive by them, and do not know anything about modern life and global cultures. Furthermore, they are very sad people by modern people or white man. Because, they do not have anything in order to deal with other areas. Thence, natives can be only primitive for modern. In my estimation, modern process is a line of life and designed by other powerful countries. So, the process will always be in order to apply on others or anti-moderns.

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