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Sunday, 29 April 2018

Tuareg and Fulani Herders


There have been attempts, in northern Mali's Menaka region, to incite enmity and ethnic conflict between Tuareg, historically nomadic Berber people, and Fulani herdsmen, over scarce watering points in the Sahara, according to Euronews (28 April, 2018).

A plea to leave pastoral people in peace!


Back in 1978:


Fulani Flautist

At the edge of the forest reserve
We stopped to stretch our legs.
The road gangs had not reached this far.
The jungle cats had yet to come
To claw up trees and undergrowth.
No bulldozers, graders or scrapers,
No pipeline crews; only our Landrover
Had so far disturbed the peace.
   Out of the forest the faint sound of a flute;
A mirage of silver-white cows.
I watched the herd materialise;
The sound of the flute grew louder.
Long-horned cattle, groomed like stallions,
Sleek-skinned, clean and cared-for.
The Fulani flautist emerged from the trees:
Standing before us with a welcoming smile.
He stopped to play, acknowledged our interest,
And them ambled away with his herd.
   I would have followed the Fulani herdsman,
But I could hear less soothing sounds.
The big yellow cats were coming,
Rumbling through the forest reserve.
The ground was beginning to tremble.
And the fragile flute of the nomad
Would soon be crushed beneath caterpillar tracks;
And the cattle would soon have to graze
On whatever might be left
Between the asphalt and acres of maize.


JP, September 1978


See also, my posting, September 20, 2014:


My Old 'Ud (Outi, Oud); Chorly, Tuareg 'Ud


Chorly (album samples)


Also,  on modern Tuareg music, from Prospero, The Economist - When Tuareg music and rock’n’roll collide


Imarhan - Imarhan (Official Video)





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