Ron Vave

PhD Candidate, UH Mānoa Marine Biology

Local communities in Fiji have established more than 400 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) around the country in the past 20 years. The purpose is largely for food security. What is rarely mentioned and elaborated on in literature is that MPAs have been established culturally for 100 nights in some parts of the country, following the burial and funeral of a loved one. These MPAs are harvested after 100 nights for a feast in memory of the deceased. Those who have witnessed such practices recall large and diverse catches. The overarching question that my research seeks to answer is “How have the cultural practice of indigenous Fijian funerals changed and how does this affect social and ecological resilience?”