Enormous lip plates of the Suri and Mursi women- beautiful or scary?

Along the Omo River valley in Ethiopia, one can find the women sporting enormous lip and ear plates. This unusual beauty standard of theirs has made them a popular tourist attraction.  Mursi and Suri people live an egalitarian agro-pastoral life. Yet many of their girls readily decide to plug their lower lip with clay plates…

Okrika: The Thriving Pre-Used Fashion Apparel Market of Nigeria

Miuccia Prada once said, “What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today when human contacts are so quick. Fashion is instant language.” The quote quite precisely answers why people from across the globe, despite their religion, social status, skin color, or geographic location, feel the constant need to buy fashionable…

Binding love with diversity: a glimpse of Indian marriages

Marriages are made in heaven- that’s what we usually hear. In India, this thought has found expression in the form of wedding rituals. India, as a nation, is filled with diverse cultures and traditions. The uniqueness of each one of these cultures and their matrimonial rites emphasize nothing else but one thought, how new doors…

Oleku: An Inseparable Part of the Nigerian Fashion Trend

Imagination is an idea that has taken the shape of a reality countless times since the beginning of civilization. In fashion, designers use their vision to conceptualize and create either something brand new or to give the existing trends a different yet exciting dimension. It takes more than just a sense of style to accurately…

Why West African women wear Waist-beads

Ileke-Idi (Yoruba), which literally means waistband, is an accessory worn by the women of West Africa for centuries. Initially, the waist beads were a significant part of the cultural identity of the Yoruba Tribe in Nigeria. Therefore, the tribe is given credit for the popularity of this accessory in the country.   In Nigeria, mostly, the…

Believers of the Land of the Dead: the Idu Mishmi Tribe of Arunachal Pradesh

The Mishmi or Deng minority ethnic groups residing mainly in Tibet (China) and Arunachal Pradesh (India), are formed by three main tribes: Idu Mishmi; Digaro; and Miju Mishmi. The people of the Idu Mishmi tribe are believers of Holy Spirits, who, according to them, are always present in places such as farms, houses, forests, rivers, and mountains.

Lagos from the Past

The Yorubas are one of the vast tribes in Nigeria occupying most of the southwestern part of the country including Lagos. One of the unique history of the Yorubas of Lagos is the celebration of the Eyo (also known as the Adamu Orisha play) festival to guide the soul of a dead Oba (king) or a high ranked chief and to celebrate the coronation of a new Oba.

China’s Qingming Festival: A Day for Remembering the Dead

The Qingming Festival (清明) or the Tomb-Sweeping Day started some 2500 years ago during the Zhou Dynasty’s reign. Usually, the festival falls on the first day of the fifth solar term (around April 4th, 5th, or 6th) of each year, as per the Chinese Gregorian calendar.

Chinese Spring Festival: Time for Dumplings and New Year Cakes

China’s most significant festival, “Chunjie” or the “Spring Festival” dates back somewhere between 1600 and 1100 B.C, during the reigns of the Shang Dynasty. Celebrated by more than 20% of the human population, Chunjie is one of the most popular festivals in the world. Except for China, it is also celebrated in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Australia, Europe, New Zealand, America, and Canada because of the sizeable Chinese population residing in these nations.

Jallikattu: A Controversial Sport from the State of Tamil Nadu

“Jallikattu,” a sport that got its name from Tamil words “Jalli,” which means gold or silver coins, and “Kattu,” which means “tying,” is one of the most popular cultural sport in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The history of this traditional sport dates back to somewhere between 400 BC to 100 BC.