Monkey Head Soup
Over the course of eight years Charlie Lindsay spent every winter with a traditional shaman, deep in the rain forest of Siberut, an island west of Sumatra in Indonesia. He photographed one of the world's last Stone Age tribes, essentially from the inside. This work became the basis for the book Mentawai Shaman (Aperture 1992). For the Mentawai the monkey hunt is a ritual affair, confirming that the spirits of the dead have been appeased through festivals and ancient rites. Once when a baby monkey was orphaned by the killing of its mother the clan tried to keep it alive through breast feeding themselves. 'The monkey meat was tough as leather, a challenging delicacy.'
Photos courtesy Charles Lindsay.
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