When European colonists arrived in Papua New Guinea, tobacco and the custom of smoking already were widespread but not universal. The newcomers quickly filled this void by introducing trade tobacco, which nearly everywhere was rapidly adopted. A "passion" for smoking was especially evident among those to whom tobacco was previously unknown or very new. The chemical properties of nicotine combined with an absence of cultural rules regarding its use to create a new "god."
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/terence_hays/39/