The traditional Kavalan (Kebalan) society is a matrilocal society, in which the groom must live with the bride’s family after marriage and obey the female elders in the bride’s family. During the Japanese colonization, the Kavalan people living in Hualien mainly marry their own people. After the 1970s, the percentage of exogamy with other ethnic groups gradually increased.
Organization In the Kavalan culture, middle-aged males are called elders, and they jointly determine important public affairs within the community. As the meeting convener, the chief represents the community externally and implements the decisions made by the elders. The elder system is responsible for the internal and external communication and communications within the community. Cultural heritage, rituals, and coordinations between the government sectors and the community in public affairs are determined after discussion between elders and the chief.
3. Age Class
The age class is an important power unit in the community. People are classified by age and take care of different affairs in the community. For example, in the old days, males living in Xinshe (Pate Rungan) community carried out farming tasks such as dibbling of rice seedlings, mowing grass and harvesting according to their age. Currently, people of different ages take care of different jobs in Harvest Festivals. Daily tasks are shared by elderlies, adults and females; and serving the community is everyone’s motto.