Survivor Wiki
Survivor Wiki

Tribes Divided by Ethnicity is a game-shifting paradigm employed at the start of a competition that divides contestants into ethnic-specific tribes for a pre-determined amount of time. This twist has only been used in the first two episodes of Survivor: Cook Islands.

Twist History

Cook Islands

Tribes were divided up into 4 ethnic groups: Hispanic-Americans (Aitutaki: Billy, Cecilia, Cristina, JP, and Ozzy), Caucasians (Rarotonga: Adam, Candice, Jessica, Jonathan, and Parvati), Asian-Americans (Puka Puka: Becky, Brad, Cao Boi, Jenny, and Yul), and African-Americans (Manihiki: Nate, Rebecca, Sekou, Stephannie, and Sundra). The tribes would stay this way until Day 7 when both tribes were absorbed into Aitutaki and Rarotonga.


Controversial in its execution, division by ethnicity was deemed as racial segregation by many groups and sponsors. This led to companies withdrawing their products, though some of these sponsors claim that the game format change had nothing to do with their withdrawal.



Survivor Gameplay
Challenge Advantage · Do-It-Yourself Challenge · Duel · Family Visit · Immunity Challenge (Final Immunity Challenge) · Immunity Idol · Immunity Necklace · Medallion of Power · Reward Challenge · Survivor Auction
Edge of Extinction · Ejection · Evacuation · Final Tribal Council · Jury · Quit · Redemption Island · Snuffer · Sole Survivor · Tiebreaker · Torch · Tribal Council · Urn
Alliance · Pagonging · Split Vote (Strategy)
Social Dynamics
Final Two · Final Three · Merge · Tribe

Battle of the Sexes · Blood vs. Water · Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty · Old vs. Young · Returning Players · Schoolyard Pick · Tribes Divided by Ethnicity

Tribal Council-Related

Double Elimination · Double Tribal Council · Extra Vote · Hidden Immunity Idol (History) · Idol Nullifier · Joint Tribal Council · Juror Removal · Shot in the Dark · Vote Blocker · Vote Steal


Advantage Menu · Buried Treasure · Day Zero · Exile Island · Fake Merge · Fire Token · First Impressions · Ghost Island · Haves vs. Have Nots · Island of the Idols · Kidnapping · Legacy Advantage · Looting · Mutiny · One World · Reward Steal · Summit · The Outcasts · Tribe Leader · Tribe Switch

Fan Favorite Award · Lawsuits and Legal Action · Ponderosa · Reunion Show
Buff · Confessional · Luxury Item · Rites of Passage · Survivor Rulebook · Ulonging