2017International Austronesian Conference

Cultural Heritage & Community Empowerment

    Kasavakan

  • Introduction to the people

    The Pinuyumayan scatters in the southern part of Taitung Rift Valley, and is divided into eight communities and ten tribes including Sakuban, Apapolo, Ulivelivek, Longguomai, Alripay, Pinaski, Tamalrakaw, Likavung, Kasavakan, and Katratripulr; the current population of the Pinuyumayan is roughly more than 10,000.

    Due to different legends of origins amongst the tribes, the Pinuyumayan can be categorized into the Pinuyumayan (born by bamboos) Community and the Katratripulr (born by stones) Community.

    The traditional social system of the Pinuyumayan mostly adopts uxorilocal marriage and is famous for its Palakuwan (Gathering House of the Youth) system. A Palakuwan is the center of politics and educational venue, all unmarried males, upon turning 13, must stay in the Palakuwan to accept military and decorum trainings to fend for their tribes, and they will be assigned to different age classes according to their ages.



    Introduction to the tribe

    Kasavakan Tribe is one of the eight communities and ten tribes; it is located in the southwest of Taitung City, with its face towards the sea and back against the mountains. Kasavakan is situated in the southwest of Taitung City, sitting on the fan edge of Taitung Alluvial Plain, with its face towards the sea and back against the mountains. The village is comprised of six settlements, including, from north to south, Jian-shan Rd. (Upper Kasavakan), Jian-fong, Jian-dong (Yuan-teng), Yu-chi, Xin-she (Lower Kasavakan), and Ming-shen. Among the six settlements, Lower Kasavakan is the largest with the most concentrated population, so people usually use Xin-she to represent Kasavakan, or simply call Kasavakan as Xin-she. Its residents majorly consist of the Pinuyumayans.

    Kasavakan Tribe is made popular by its village of drift wood carvings; you can see board and wood carvings at display in every crossroad, corner, and on the household walls in the village. This makes the tribe radiate with an indigenous atmosphere, and the unique community arts and culture displaying space will surely continue passing on the wood carving and the traditional Pinuyumayan culture for generations to come.

    Another important feature of Kasavakan Tribe is the swings. Every end of December, on the New Year’s Eve, the males in the tribe will gather to build swings that are at least three floors high. The swing is one of Kasavakan Tribe’s refined technologies that exhibits traditional craftsmanship. The tribe folks who ride on these swings and being bathed with the chief’s blessings will have good luck for the coming New Year.