West African Music

Pestles against mortars, axes against wood, the rattling of loom shuttles, and the gasps of billows all set the tempo, the cadenced backdrop, for traditional West African music. And its …

The West African Mask

As sculptural, aesthetic, and museum-worthy that the mask may be, it cannot, and was never meant to, stand on its own, at least in traditional West Africa. It is but …

Garay Alphabet: a Wolof Script

Garay is an alphabet created specifically for Wolof, a language widely spoken in Senegal and parts of the Gambia and Mauritania. Traditionally, Wolof was written with an adapted version of …

The Mandé Ritual Clown

Comedians, contrarians, jokesters and tricksters have made their appearance in all human societies, from the more or less secular, bell-capped court jesters of the English Royal Court to the humorous …