Get to know the African tribes

African culture is rich and diverse and often also a victim of the simplicity of Western thought. Africa is equivalent to three times Europe (including Russia west of the Urals); it is thousands of years of history, of civilizations, of empires as big as the Europeans and of cultures, ethnicities and customs that are still preserved today.

It is in the ethnic groups that we can trace a part of the living African past; original communities that do not even coincide with the country - something that has been a serious problem in the post-colonial era due to group feeling and the deceptive borders imposed by Europe. For this reason, we often find tribes among nations and others located in several countries at once.


Some of the best known tribes are:

#1. The Zulu people

The Zulus are organized in patriarchal and polygamous communities; the Zulu people are today mainly settled in the province of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) with small groups also located in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Zambia. Founded in 1709, between the 18th and 19th centuries the Zulu Kingdom extended as a monarchy along the coast of the Indian Ocean from the Tugela River in the south to the Pongola River in the north under the command of Shaka Zulu, who came to face and win several battles against the British Empire. At present, the Zulu dance is one of the most famous cultural features for its particular dance.

#2. The Tuareg

The Tuaregs are a nomadic Berber people known as the blue men of the Sahara for their clothing. They move in large groups through the desert, searching in each season for the most convenient regions to live in. They practice Islam because of historical influence from the East, although it is an Islam with unorthodox animist beliefs.

They have their own writing, Tifinagh, and their own language, Tamashek, and have been a fundamental part of commerce in North Africa since antiquity. Today, advances in transportation have sedimented part of their population.

#3. Masai

The Masai have maintained a certain presence in the media because of their semi-nomadic culture and interest in their traditions. Currently, they are divided into 5 clans between Kenya and Tanzania with a total population of over 800,000 people. Before colonization, the Masai were a warrior people; however, today they are dedicated to shepherding. Even so, they maintain many of the traditions: the political system of elders, circumcision and the brutal ablation, against which many Masai are already fighting.

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