The populating of Oceania was achieved by the arrival of small groups of diverse cultures. The isolation of the New Guinea mountains, the volcanic fertility of Samoa or Tahiti, the coral islands have differentiated a little more lifestyles and customs. Pygmies and Papuans have populated New Guinea 25,000 years ago. Polynesian culture spread to Melanesia and Micronesia in -2,000. The Polynesians have traveled on their canoes hundreds of miles from Hawaii to Samoa, then to the Tuamotu and to New Zealand before the 14th century. Until the middle of the 19th century, these populations still have a Neolithic civilization, today only a few groups (Australia, New Guinea) are still hunter - gatherers. The aboriginal universe of Australia is one of the most subtle of all, and will be greatly resumed to study the totemic relation to the world. The Oceanians, ignorant of the metal have worked, stone, wood, clay, barks, fibers, for the art and their daily life. Art can also manifests itself in works without duration (painting on sand, mimes and dances, tattoos, floral decors), and takes multiple facets throughout Oceania. For Micronesia, the population of Mariana Islands dates from -1,500, and would have come from the Philippines. The prehistory of Western Micronesia (Yap and Palau) is less known but the influences of northern Melanesia are undeniable. The populating of East Micronesia dates back to 1,000, by Polynesians of Western Polynesia, some having emigrated very far (Ponape and Kusaie). Melanesia (Papua, Solomon, Vanuatu, Fiji, New Caledonia) has been populated by the Austronesians from South East Asia on some points in New Guinea which have gradually colonized the various mentioned islands. The acceptance of a primary division between the Formosan languages and the Malayo-Polynesian languages is consistent with archeologoical evidence indicating that Proto-Austronesian language was spoken in and around Taiwan about 5 to 7,000 years ago. A combination of linguistic and archeological findings allow us to reconstruct to a certain extent the way of life led by speakers of Proto-Austronesian. They apparently relied on fishing and agriculture. They developed excellent navigational skills and outrigger canoes, which to this day are found throughout the Austronesian-speaking area. Human society, is very ancient in Melanesia. Radiocarbon dating has indicated 26,000 yearr of settlement, with some estimates ranging up to 40,000.
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