Fayu people

The Fayu people are an ethnic group who live in an area of swampland in the province of Papua, in Western New Guinea, Indonesia. When first contacted by westerners they numbered about 400, a number reduced from about 2000 due to violence within the group. The Fayu generally live in single family groups with gatherings of several such groups once or twice a year to exchange brides. Two books have been written about living among them. The first is by Sabine Kuegler, who spent most of her childhood growing up with them.[2] The second is Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel, where the group is used as an example of a band type society.[3] The Fayu are often described in books written about them as Stone Age people, cannibalistic, brutal fighters, backward, and as a people who can only count up to three.[4] Today,[when?] the Fayu people number up to 1,470; the majority of them are Christians.[1]

Fayu people
Total population
Regions with significant populations
 Indonesia (Papua (province))
Fayu language, Indonesian language
Christianity (65%), other ethnic religion (35%)[1]


  1. ^ a b http://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/11193/ID
  2. ^ Sabine Kuegler (2007). Child Of The Jungle: The True Story Of A Girl Caught Between Two Worlds. Grand Central Publishing. ISBN 0-7595-7272-0.
  3. ^ Jared Diamond (1999). Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. W. W. Norton. ISBN 0-3930-6922-2.
  4. ^ Deutsche Gesellschaft für Kulturmorphologie & Universität Frankfurt am Main. Frobenius-Institut (1967). Paideuma: Mitteilungen zur Kulturkunde, Volumes 13-15. Kohlhammer Verlag. ISSN 0078-7809.

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