- Bougainville Island
name = Bougainville
image caption = Bougainville and neighbouring islands
image size =
Location map|Papua New Guinea|lat=-6.0|long=155.0
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native name =
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coordinates = coord|6|00|S|155|00|E|display=inline
archipelago = Solomon Islands
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major islands =
area = convert|9318|km2|sqmi
highest mount =
elevation = convert|2715|m|ft
country = Papua New Guinea
country admin divisions title = Province
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population = 175,160
population as of = 2000
density = 18.80
ethnic groups =
additional info =
Bougainville is part of
Papua New Guinea. Geographically, Bougainville is included in the chain of islands known as the Solomon Islands in Melanesia. Bougainville, the adjacent islandof Buka, and assorted outlying islands including the Carterets are sometimes known as the North Solomons. Bougainville is included in the Solomon Islands rain forests ecoregion. The nation of Solomon Islandsis a separate state.
Together they make up the
Papua New Guinean (PNG) Bougainville Province. The population of the province is 175,160 (2000 census).
In the 1970s,
Bougainville Copper Limited(BCL, a subsidiary of Rio Tinto) began exploiting the island's huge copper reserves. Resentment over the negative effects of the company's activities on the area and the lack of any tangible benefit to the islanders erupted into conflict in the 1990s. Attempts at proclaiming the independence of Bougainville ( Republic of North Solomons) have occurred twice: in 1975 and 1990. In the second case the government of Papua New Guineamoved to put down what became a secessionist movement led by Francis Ona, a former surveyor for BCL. The PNG army received military aidfrom Australiaand enlisted the support of Sandline International, a mercenaryfirm. The island was embargoed to weaken its people's resistance. However, they proved much more resilient than expected, designing their own weapons and converting engines to vegetable oil. Peace talks brokered by New Zealandbegan in 1997, leading to autonomy for the island.
Bougainville and its 1990s struggle for independence is the setting for the 2007 novel "
Mister Pip", by New Zealand author Lloyd Jones. Louis Antoine de Bougainvillenamed the island after himself.
A documentary about the struggle of the indigenous population to save their island from environmental destruction and gain independence, was made in 1999, called
Coconut Revolution. [cite web| title=Coconut Revolution, The (Bougainville story)| publisher=CultureShop.org| month=November| year=2001| url=http://www.cultureshop.org/details.php?code=COCOREV| accessdate=2008-01-27]
There are several indigenous languages in Bougainville. These include both
The most widely spoken Austronesian language is Halia and its dialects, spoken in the island of Buka and the Selau peninsula of Northern Bougainville. Other Austronesian languages include Petats, Solos, Saposa/Taiof, Hahon and Tinputz, all spoken in the northern quarter of Bougainville, Buka and surrounding islands. These languages are closely related. Banoni and Arawa are Austronesian languages not closely related to the former, which are spoken in the coastal areas of central and south Bougainville. All these languages are part of the Melanesian sub group of Austronesian languages.
In the nearby atolls of Mortlock Islands, an Austronesian language of the Polynesian sub group is spoken
The Papuan languages are all confined to the main island of Bougainville. These include Rotokas, a language with a very small inventory of phonemes, Eivo, Buin, Keriaka, Nasioi, Motuna, Usiai and several others. These languages are part of the East Papuan language family.
None of these languages is spoken by more than 20% of the entire population of Bougainville, and the largest languages such as Nasioi, Motuna, Buin and Halia are split into dialects that are not always mutually understandable. For general communication most Bougainvilleans use
Tok Pisinas a lingua franca, and at least in the coastal areas Pisin is often learned by children in a bilingual environment. English and Tok Pisin are the languages of official business and government.
Empress Augusta Bay
Battle of Empress Augusta Bay
North Solomon Islands
* Robert Young Pelton, Hunter Hammer and Heaven, Journeys to Three World's Gone Mad. ISBN 1-58574-416-6
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Look at other dictionaries:
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