I didn't realise that the PNG highland matter of cannibalism of the dead used to be so, um, thorough:
As one medical researcher described, "If the body was buried it was eaten by worms; if it was placed on a platform it was eaten by maggots; the Fore believed it was much better that the body was eaten by people who loved the deceased than by worms and insects."
Women removed the brain, mixed it with ferns, and cooked it in tubes of bamboo. They fire-roasted and ate everything except the gall bladder. It was primarily adult women who
did so, says Lindenbaum, because their bodies were thought to be capable of housing and taming the dangerous spirit that would accompany a dead body.
"So, the women took on the role of consuming the dead body and giving it a safe place inside their own body — taming it, for a period of time, during this dangerous period of mortuary
ceremonies," says Lindenbaum.
But women would occasionally pass pieces of the feast to children. "Snacks," says Lindenbaum. "They ate what their mothers gave them," she says, until the boys hit a certain
age and went off to live with the men. "Then, they were told not to touch that stuff."