Any of the Melanesian people of the Kiriwina (Trobriand) Islands, lying off eastern New Guinea. Their subsistence is based on yams and other vegetables, domesticated pigs, and fish. Trobrianders are noted for their elaborate intertribal trading system, the kula, by which red shell necklaces are traded between permanent trading partners in a clockwise direction around a ring of islands; white shell bracelets are traded counterclockwise. Among the Trobrianders, wealth is extremely important as a sign of power. They were the subject of highly influential studies by Bronislaw Malinowski.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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