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Bogolan Tunic

Bamana peoples

Not on view

Bogolan has served as a bodily shield for those vulnerable to an excess of nyama, the energy of action. Hunters, exposed to prodigious quantities of nyama following the killing of prey in the wilderness, have used it as protective apparel. For those in the Bamana heartland who were especially resistant to the imposition of Islam during the last century, it constituted a form of indigenous Bamana cultural expression through which traditional ideas of spiritual potency were boldy manifested.

Bogolan Tunic, Cotton, dye, Bamana peoples

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© Musée du Quai Branly–Jacques Chirac, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais/Art Resource, NY