Customs and traditions
The Naurus are usually said to be more
Western influenced than other peoples on small South
Pacific islands. The Western presence during the
colonial era and the great material abundance that
characterized the country for a few decades have
contributed to the extinction of indigenous customs and
Australian football - almost a mixture of football
and rugby - is national sport. Weightlifting is also
popular and many Naurus have been successful abroad.
This includes former President Marcus Stephen, who won a
large number of medals in international competitions.
Overview of the capital city of Nauru, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.
However, some music with rhythmic singing has been
preserved, as well as fishing with traditional methods.
Catching and taming frigate birds is also an old custom
that lives on.
Furthermore, the Naurus often have a strong identity
attached to the nation and to their own clan. In the
past, the residents were divided into two classes, and
in addition there was a class of non-Naurus who were not
allowed to own land. Nowadays, the Naurus see their
society as democratic, and they refrain from class
However, the ties to one's own family, or clan, are
still important. Society is traditionally matrilinear,
which means that kinship is mainly counted on the
mother. The position of women is relatively strong,
although men dominate in politics, for example.
Children are expected to show reverence for the
elderly, not least for mothers. Pointing is considered
Almost all food is imported, with the exception of
fish and some fruits and vegetables that the residents
grow themselves. Rice is a staple. Fast food is popular,
which leads to health problems (see Social conditions).
In Nauru, too, the Naurus are Western influenced:
shorts and linen are common. Anyone who wants to visit a
church or government should dress a little stricter.
Swimsuits are not normally used - the Naurus bath with
their clothes on.
Independence Day is celebrated on January 31 and
Constitution Day on May 17, both on the occasion of the
liberation from Australia in 1968. Another important
celebration is Angam Day on October 26. Angam means
about fulfillment, and it is celebrated that the
population has on two occasions recovered after risking
disappearing. It happened in 1932 and 1949, when it
managed to reach 1,500 individuals after falling below
what is considered a critical limit.
National Youth Day is celebrated on September 25 and
holidays also fall on New Year, Easter and Christmas.