The story of the great salt tree

La historia del gran árbol de sal

Object Details

Subject LanguageKuna, San Blas
Language PID(s)ailla:119499
Title [Indigenous]Paluwala
Language of Indigenous Titlecuk
TitleThe story of the great salt tree
Language Community
Place CreatedKuna Yala and Darien, Panama
Date Created1978-01-11
Description [Indigenous]
Language of Indigenous Description
DescriptionThe story of the great salt tree (Paluwala). This is the story of the felling of a great world-tree or salt tree by the hero Tat Ipe despite its being repeatedly magically regenerated. One example of a mythological motif prominent in many cultures. See Chapin 1989:64-70, Aiban Wagwa 2000:42. Also discussed by Nordenskiöld et al. (1938).

The speaker, Sakla (Chief) Gonzalo Salcedo of the village of Niatupu or Tigantiki, recorded a number of narratives, cosmological descriptions, and elaborate metaphors from the chiefly tradition called Pap Ikar (Father's Way). The initial recording was of an unstaged teaching session in which Chief Salcedo instructed another village leader. In each of the subsequent recordings, made between the early 1970s and the mid-1990s, Chief Salcedo narrated one historical/mythological episode, one set of didactic metaphors, or one aspect of Kuna cosmology. The narratives were spoken into the tape recorder privately at home, without a Kuna audience, but the manner of the narration was almost identical with that used in the initial teaching session and in other teaching sessions that were not recorded. For one of the narratives, the Story of Inananatil (analyzed in Howe & Hirchfeld, 1981), Chief Salcedo was also recorded chanting the story in the gathering house of Ukkuppa village in 1975, offering an opportunity to compare the spoken and chanted narratives.

The story comes in three parts (I001 - I003). I004 is the speaker's commentary of the story in Kuna.
Source Notereel 6.1
Contributor(s) Individual / RoleSalcedo, Gonzalo (Speaker)
Howe, James (Researcher)
Contributor(s) Corporate / Role

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