a traditional bamboo musical instrument (Jew’s harp).


susap (Jew’s harp)

One of the most widespread traditional instruments used in Papua New Guinea is the susap, a bamboo mouth harp commonly played for self-entertainment and sometimes in traditional courting rituals. In Papua New Guinea, the susap is considered to possess love-controlling magic that men can use to attract a woman’s affections. It is also often used as a “speech surrogate” to create the illusion of speech in a musical context. In this way, a man is able to “say” things to a woman through the instrument’s “twanging” sound that might otherwise be considered inappropriate. If the its magic has worked, the woman will be attracted to the man.

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