The Kimam live in villages scattered across what little dry ground exists on low-lying Yos Sudarso Island on the south-central coast of New Guinea. Gardens are constructed in the surrounding swamps using layers of soil and vegetation in order to grow tubers and fruit trees; a diet supplemented by gathering, fishing and hunting. Each autonomous village forms the major unit of ritual and political life, and comprises nuclear families residing on patches of raised ground, organized into wards belonging to one of two ceremonially-opposed village sections that complement each other in a variety of ways, including as reciprocal "wife-givers" and "wife-takers."
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