Chinese Culture > Culture in Taiwan > The Culture of Taiwan's Indigenous Peoples > Rukai, Paiwan Culture


The Rukai and Paiwan

The Rukai and Paiwan number around 10,000 and 77,000 respectively. They share many common cultural features, including belief in sun and hundred-pace snake totems, a social hierarchy of nobility and common people, bilateral descent system (combining partilineal and matrilineal features), manufacture of earthenware pots and glazed beads, woodcarving arts, and swing (an important wedding ceremony participated in by women). Under the aristocratic system, nobility leased land to commoners for farming, allowing other tribe members to concentrate on artistic creativity. This led to the artistic achievements of these two ethnic groups becoming the most distinguished among all Taiwan's indigenous peoples.