Home » Koteka, Tribal Identity and Heritage

Koteka, Tribal Identity and Heritage



The people that we are talking about are located in Papua province. Actually some people are willing to wear complete clothes but they are only a few modern native Papua, foreigners and outsider, but since the amount of primitive tribes are much bigger than modern people. Major tribal people who do not want to wear any clothes, covering their penis with koteka.

Koteka Papua

Koteka Papua

 Koteka is a shield which is usually made from old gourd shield or bobe. It is put to a big fire which is made in the sands until its content flows. Then it is hung under the fireplace until it dries out. Before using, it is decorated with plait and rattan to help it hang in the stomach. The amount of rattan tie in the stomach shows how brave the wearer it is because rattan only grows in some areas in which sometimes the area is owned by the enemy, so to get rattan the person should fight or declare a war.

Unique Culture Papua

Unique Culture Papua

Most people know Koteka as a penis cover but actually it is clothes for native Papua, just like T-shirt or shirt. Besides being clothes, it plays some roles such as a tribal identification. In Papua, each tribe wears different form of Koteka for example Tiom tribe wears two gourds all at once but Yali men only wears one and thin koteka. The form of koteka is also determined by the activity which will be done. For working, Papua men wears short and plain koteka, but when he wants to attend sacred ceremony, he will change koteka which is longer and it has some decoration on it. It can be used as a carrier also.


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