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Mountain Musicians: Bunun

  • PostDate:2021-10-15

Mountain Musicians: Bunun

Supposedly the Bunun migrated from Nantou to Hualien’s Zhuoxi and Wanrong townships, while some moved to Taitung’s Haiduan Township. They are a classic example of high mountain-dwelling aborigines.

Cultural Features

The Bunun have a patriarchal society, where the family is considered the basic unit of a clan. Clan members share hunting grounds, meat, funeral practices, and legal responsibilities.


Every year during November and December, the Bunun host a millet sowing ceremony, singing a prayer to the heavens for an abundant millet harvest together in a now internationally-renowned “Pasibutbut” (Eight-Part Polyphony).

The ear-hunting ritual is another grand Bunun ceremony. To ask the gods for skilled hunting abilities and a year’s good harvest, tribe members hang deer’s ears on tree branches at the ceremonial grounds. All the men must participate in hunting, and boys are taught marksmanship at this time.