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  • Unit 2 Aboriginal Festivals in Taiwan

  • The aboriginal peoples of Taiwan have a deep and rich history of festivals and ceremonies.

  • These momentous gatherings see tribes perform rituals for blessings and good luck, in which they sing and dance to ensure their group's unity.

  • The aboriginal groups of Taiwan have been on the island for at least 15,000 years and number about half a million people.

  • Each group has its own unique festivals where tribe members bestow blessings upon food, worship the gods, and commemorate ancestors.

  • The rituals also serve as social settings for members to gather and celebrate their ways of life in nature.

  • The Harvest Festival of the Amis people, held in and around Taitung and Hualien, is meant to show gratitude to their deity for the reaped crops.

  • Before rice was introduced to Taiwan, millet was the grain of choice for the Amis, and this festival traditionally aimed to appease the millet god.

  • Nowadays, the tribe still prays to the deity in hopes that future harvests will be successful.

  • The Harvest Festival usually lasts approximately seven days.

  • During their rites, the Amis put on colorful attire and partake in many dances before eating and playing games around campfires.

  • Young men and women dance and then choose potential partners when women tug on embroidered bags that men wear around their waists.

  • In addition, the younger males will also dance to impress their elders so that they may stand a chance of becoming the next tribal chief.

  • Men must complete this rite of passage to be considered adults in the tribe.

Unit 2 Aboriginal Festivals in Taiwan

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