Monday, December 07, 2009

Continuity of Chamorro culture described

Continuity of Chamorro culture described

Monday, 07 December 2009 23:11 Varitey News Staff

(GUAMPEDIA) -- Fifty-four new entries describing the Chamorro culture are now available on line at

The new entries fill out the Chamorro culture section of Guam’s online encyclopedia, giving users 110 ways to learn about and celebrate the Chamorro culture. The entries describe Chamorro matrilineal society, gender roles, value systems, divisions of labor and resources, social stratification, symbolism, and traditions to do with birth, marriage and death.

Chamorro proverbs, the ancient Chamorro calendar, and three more Chamorro folktales have also been added to the website. Seven in depth profiles of Chamorro maga’lahi’s from the times of the Spanish-Chamorro wars, from 1668 to 1695, are also now available.

Entries that describe key Chamorro values such as mamahlao (shame), maggodai (urge to pinch) and geftao (hospitality) are offered as well.

“This body of work will further the understanding of Chamorro culture and ensure that knowledge about it doesn’t become lost,” said Shannon Murphy, Guampedia managing editor. “It is our hope that Guampedia will be used as a teaching tool both for Chamorros and non-Chamorros who live in the Marianas, so newcomers can be sensitive and respectful of the Chamorro culture.”

Included with the entries are 52 new photographs and illustrations, as well as one video clip to illustrate a folktale about Chaife, a god of creation that originated from Spanish times in the Marianas.

The research and writing for the new entries was done by Dominica Tolentino, Michael Lujan Bevacqua, Victoria Lola Leon Guerrero, Tanya Mendiola, Shannon Murphy, Nathalie Pereda, Art De Oro, Chelsea San Nicolas and Chloe Babauta.

The entries were reviewed by Dr. Larry Cunningham, Dr. Judy Flores, Prof. Peter Onedera, Dr. John Peterson, Ron Laguana, Ryan Paulino, Prof. Michael Lujan Bevacqua, Josefina Perez Barcinas, her daughter Rosanna Barcinas, Kelly Marsh, Tyrone Taitano, Prof. Omaira Brunal-Perry, and Dr. Nicolas Goetzfridt.

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