Mali – Bamana Cults : introduction

Bamana : in the strict sense, those who speak the Bambara language; in a wider sense, those who are part of the non-islamic cults, jow- which are “power associatons”, initiation associations, brotherhoods, re­li­gious as­so­ci­ations, or se­cret societies.

For the Bamana , all objects and beings con­tain an active energy called Nyama. Through secret knowledge acquired in the initiation societies, they claim to be able to control and act on this energy.

Soloist at the Sogo-bo festival. Kirango 1980