June 11, 2008


I'm also going to Mali!  Again, courtesy of my wonderful friend Wiki, here are some interesting facts about the country.

·        Mali is the seventh largest country in Africa, bordering Algeria on the north, Niger on the east, Burkina Faso and the Côte d'Ivoire on the south, Guinea on the south-west, and Senegal and Mauritania on the west.


·        Mali historically has enjoyed reasonably good inter-ethnic relations; however, some hereditary servitude relationships exist, as do ethnic tensions between the Songhai and the Tuareg.


·        Malian musical traditions are derived from the griots, who are known as 'Keeper of Memories'.  Some famous Malian influences in music are kora virtuoso musician Toumani Diabaté, the late roots and blues guitarist Ali Farka Touré, the Tuareg band Tinariwen, and several Afro-pop artists such as Salif Keita, the duo Amadou et Mariam, and Oumou Sangare.


·        Most Malians wear flowing, colorful robes called boubous that are typical of West Africa.


·         Rice and millet are the staples of Malian cuisine, which is heavily based on cereal grains.  Grains are generally prepared with sauces made from leaves such spinach or baobab leaves, with tomato, or with peanut sauce, and may be accompanied by pieces of grilled meat (typically chicken, mutton, beef, or goat).


·        The Dogon are a group of people living in the central plateau region of Mali, south of the Niger bend near the city of Bandiagara in the Mopti region.  The Dogon are best known for their mythology, their mask dances, wooden sculpture and their architecture. The past century has seen significant changes in the social organization, material culture and beliefs of the Dogon, partly because Dogon country is one of Mali's major tourist attractions.


But what I really want to do in Mali is :

1-Purchase Tuareg leatherworks

2- Visit Dogon Country

3- Buy Malian music (especially Tinariwen which you can't find easily in the US)


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Carl said...

Hurray! 007 is getting back to Africa.

Amaury said...

Man, I envy you that's so cool!!!
When are you leaving?