Re: Cargo cults

Tue, 29 Oct 1996 20:16:02 MST

On 27 Oct 1996, Denise noe wrote:

> Where does this expression come from? Can anyone give me info on this?
> ****************************
> Denise Noe
> Koko the Signing Gorilla says: "Fine animal gorilla."
I am curreently taking a course on the peoples of the Pacific, and we have
just covered this term. As I understand it, this began to occur on
Melanasia after world war two. When european soldiers began to move into
the islands and set up their supply depots, a shack would be built and a
radio antenna would go up to keep in contact and call for supplies as
were needed. The native would see a soldier walk into a shack use the
radio, and soon after there would be a load of "cargo"/supplies arriving in
the island. Soon, the natives assimilated and began to imitate this pattern,
to the point were they too began to build shacks with pseudo "antennas"
and have a leader go into these and call for the "cargo" to arrive.
These groups can still be found in Melanasia today. I hope that this
helps and that it is not too general.

Jorge F. Alzaga