Monkey and Bush Buffalo: Mask Characters from Burkina Faso

Winiama Mask Dancer

© Tropenmuseum of the Royal Tropical Institute, this image used in accordance with Fair Use Policy.

The Winiama people live in central Burkina Faso, a landlocked country in western Africa. Like many neighboring west African tribes, they are famous for their mask making and performances. Masks are used to teach the values of the tribe. In the video below we see two characters: Monkey, who is filled with cunning but lacks discipline and so causes much trouble, and Bush Buffalo, who is strong and powerful but must wear a bell to warn others of his dangerous and unpredictable temper. Enjoy this fascinating video by Christopher Roy of the University of Iowa.

Video via Christopher Roy on Youtube.

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