Culture February 2015

Mexico. Wisdom of the mask-makers.

Every Mexican town usually has one or more artisans who make masks. All of them have two things in common: pride in their craft and enormous talent. Mask-makers must have a profound knowledge of their community’s traditional dances and each of the characters in them. They must be able to give a distinctive face to…

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Book review – The world’s most dangerous place

At a first glance, it may seem just another eye-catching headline, but it is not. The world’s most dangerous place – as the Edinburgh-based James Fergusson chose to title his book on Somalia – is a phrase that enshrines a well-articulated thesis, one that may be counter-argued, but has to be mulled over beforehand. After…

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Uganda. Karimojong. Akiriket – Joint Togetherness

According to the setting of the Karimojong social organization, an ethnic group of agro-pastoral herders living mainly in the north-east of Uganda, every neighbourhood has its own sacred ground, called akiriket. The assembly of initiated men takes its name from these places. Each generation-set has its special tree under which to sit in the assemblies,…

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Mexico. Carnival in Tetela de Ocampo. The unreal world.

They say the opposite of what they mean. It is a social game, everything under the fog. The fog is the main character in Tetela de Ocampo, a village in the mountains of Puebla, in East-Central Mexico. The streets, the bends in the roads, the landscape…all are made of fog. The inhabitants have become accustomed…

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Rely on one own strength first.

We are in Pikine, a Dakar suburb, Senegal. Father Armel Duteil, is the one telling the story. He is an 80-year-old Spiritan missionary. French by…

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The Water-Buffalo and the Tiger.

Once there lived a hard-working farmer in a small village who had a water-buffalo. Every day, with his plough on his shoulder, he led his water-buffalo…

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Youth & Mission

Nine Challenges Facing Young People in Syria.

For over nine years, violence and displacement have devastated opportunities for youth across the country. Here are nine of the most pressing challenges facing young people…

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