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The Story of Lata

From: Outer Voices
Length: 53:00

who's sailing now? women and the revival of traditional polynesian sailing in the solomon islands

Nifiloliwoman_small The Story of Lata, by Outer Voices, explores the efforts by the people of a remote part of Solomon Islands to preserve their traditional boat building culture and navigation. It explores traditional polynesian navigation in a region where the technology and knowledge is still intact. We listen to the older women who remember the old days of sailing, and who consider their role were this tradition to be revived. And we also consider the reality of modern life, which they are slowly being required to adapt to. How feasible is it to revive these ancient arts, which take time to learn? Behind the whole story is the myth of Lata, which guides us into a profound understanding of the limitlessness of time and space so necessary to the navigators behind the polynesian navigation, and consider that our modern world could do well to be informed by the patience and durability which it required.

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Piece Description

The Story of Lata, by Outer Voices, explores the efforts by the people of a remote part of Solomon Islands to preserve their traditional boat building culture and navigation. It explores traditional polynesian navigation in a region where the technology and knowledge is still intact. We listen to the older women who remember the old days of sailing, and who consider their role were this tradition to be revived. And we also consider the reality of modern life, which they are slowly being required to adapt to. How feasible is it to revive these ancient arts, which take time to learn? Behind the whole story is the myth of Lata, which guides us into a profound understanding of the limitlessness of time and space so necessary to the navigators behind the polynesian navigation, and consider that our modern world could do well to be informed by the patience and durability which it required.

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Review of The Story of Lata

Producer Stephanie Guyer-Stevens has sailed halfway around the world to bring us a beautifully produced story just in time for Asian Pacific Heritage Month. "The Story of Lata" explores the cultural traditions and contemporary challenges of Solomon Islanders in a remote corner of the South Pacific. Here, the tides of modern life have steadily eroded away knowledge of the ancient arts of sailing and navigation that once defined this culture. And it's Polynesian women who remember the old ways. Learning again, from the story of their cultural hero, Lata, to build te puke (canoes). Guyer-Stevens weaves a wonderful watery tale with just the right amount of culture, a taste of technology, and good old storytelling: perfect summer listening.

"The Story of Lata" is the next in the Outer Voices series, featuring little known stories and seldom heard voices of Asian Pacific Island women. It's a gem of a sound-rich story about intriguing, out of the way places that your listeners haven't heard about. But, if you still need a hook, consider this: May 16 was the first International Day for Sharing Life Stories. Organizers say that sharing our life stories with each other is a critical process in democratizing culture and promoting social change. Do your listeners a favor, and share this documentary of a place on earth that many of us will never see, but whose lessons about the value of returning to Earth-based, cultural traditions are relevant for sustaining communities everywhere.

Broadcast History

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Transcript

The Story of Lata

LATA MUSIC: Signature "Lata Story" music

Ambience for story of Lata:
T054_1, T055_1, T056_1, T60 (sounds of canoe being built)
Nature sounds such as T175-178 (in search of te ube bird)

Narration 1:
Every culture has its idea of how to live in balance ? no dark without light, no woman without man. For the Polynesians, living in the Solomon Islands, that person is ?Lata.? Lata is so much a part of how they see themselves, that he is their grandfather. And he learns how to do everything from nature, and with nature. Lata is the not the first person, but he is the first person to invent a voyaging canoe.
This is the story of Lata.

T28 KaveiaMyGrandfather 7:59-8:30
T28 MimiMyGrandfather 9:15-10:18
Kaveia (Overdub Translation): My grandfather Lata, from generations before, he used to take his axe over to Tahua and sit on a stone chair. And he saw...
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Timing and Cues

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Related Website

http://www.outervoices.org