Ulwaluko has undergone many changes

“Ulwaluko is a Xhosa word that refers to male circumcision, an initiation ritual performed to transform boys into men. The ritual is supposed to instill good moral and social values. Research has demonstrated that, the practice of Ulwaluko has undergone many changes primarily because of urbanization, acculturation and the emergence of back-door circumcision schools amongst other things. This has culminated in instances of moral decline such as criminal activity, drug abuse, risky sexual behaviour and inhumane behaviour among some of the initiates. There has been a recent upsurge in research on Ulwaluko in South Africa. However, lacking in this body of scholarship is a focus on how Ulwaluko constructs masculinities. This served as the motivation for my study.” Tapiwa C. Magodyo / The role of Ulwaluko in the construction of masculinity in men at the University of the Western Cape

Litema: a wall art

Litema: a wall art

Litema: a wall art practiced by Sotho women
The intertwining of geometrical figures
Renewed over the seasons

An art that would have inspired the creation of a writing
Says Ditema tsa dinoko, or "the ditema syllabary" (in sesotho)
Or Isibheqe Sohlamvu in isiZulu
A pure wonder of colors, shapes, and creativeness ...
Intended to be transcribe to Bantu languages of the south…
Besides Sesotho and isiZulu,
Tswana, a language spoken in particular in Botswana or in South Africa, in Namibia,
But also in Swati, the national language of Eswatini,
Or Lozi, a language spoken in Zambia…

Peace is ukuthula in isiZulu
And kgotso (khotso) in Sesotho…

Litema : un art mural pratiqué par les femmes Sotho
Entrelacs de figures géométriques
Renouvelées au fil des saisons

Un art qui aurait inspiré la création d’une écriture
Dite Ditema tsa dinoko, soit « le syllabaire ditema » (en sesotho)
Ou encore Isibheqe Sohlamvu en isiZulu
Une pure merveille de couleurs, de formes, et d’inventivité…
Destinée à transcrire les langues bantoues du sud…
Outre le sesotho et l’isiZulu,
le tswana, langue parlée en particulier au Botswana ou encore en Afrique du sud, en Namibie,
Mais aussi le siSwati, langue nationale du Eswatini,
Ou encore le siLozi, langue pratiquée en Zambie…

La paix est ukuthula en isiZulu
Et kgotso (khotso) en sesotho…

“Manhood must wait: virus delays South African circumcision rituals”

“For the first time in living memory, the ritual has been called off because of the coronavirus. "If we send them there and find that one boy is positive (for the virus), it means all 20 of them will be infected," said Afra Msutu, a Xhosa chief. "We decided it would be too risky and that we might lose more boys than we usually do," Msutu said, referring to the fact that dozens of initiates nationwide die from botched circumcisions each year.” AFP-2020

How ‘secret burials’ in South Africa could help tackle Covid-19′

“A ban on large funerals in South Africa has forced people to give up many traditions, but they have also rediscovered old ones, including "secret burials", as the BBC's Pumza Fihlani reports from Johannesburg. When a family is bereaved, people will travel long distances to attend both the funeral and the days of ritual in the run-up. These include repeatedly visiting the family at home to pay respects and to lend a helping hand with the preparations. Livestock also needs to be slaughtered in order to feed the anticipated guests, the cooking needs to be done, often at close quarters, and in rural areas, the grave needs to be dug, with people sometimes sharing the same pick and shovel. (…) In a bid to find an alternative and safer way to bury relatives, AmaMpondomise King Zwelozuko Matiwane issued a ban on all funeral services in his kingdom with the aim of re-introducing the ancient practice of ukuqhusheka, or secret burial. “When following this custom [of ukuqhusheka] this means people are called on to bury either on the same or the next day and with only those who were present at the time of passing,” he tells the BBC. “By returning to this ancient practice this would mean only immediate family members will able to bury a person. After the burial, the family would still be able to hold an intimate customary cleansing ceremony when they return from the burial site,” explains Mr Ranuga. These ceremonies are done through a ritual offering to cleanse the family of a “dark cloud of death”. They are usually private affairs with only close family present.” (AFP – 2020-08)


A traditional rite of initiation and circumcision into manhood, practised by the amaXhosa, and throughout South Africa. It is said to prepare young males for the responsibilities of manhood, the initiates being called abakhwetha in isiXhosa (aba: “group”, kwetha: “learn”).

Any suggestion, improvement…? Many thanks and please, contact us…


Khoisan communities in the Northern Cape are still hopeful their languages will become official. (Khoisan lgs)

Les communautés khoisan du Cap Nord espèrent toujours que leurs langues deviendront officielles.

What is there to hope for? How to define it? Is hope closing our eyes to the reality of things and the world, or is it seeing a different outcome? How does trust build a decisive part of the future? How does mistrust come about? With what consequences? How does the digital world intervene in these areas?. (to be completed)

Qu’est-ce qu’espérer ? Comment le définir ? Espérer est-il fermer les yeux sur la réalité des choses et du monde, ou bien est-ce en voir une issue différente ? En quoi la confiance construit-elle une part décisive de l’avenir ? Comment se met en place la méfiance ? Avec quelles conséquences ? Comment le numérique intervient-il en ces domaines ?... (à compléter)



Ubuntu is a Southern Africa concept involving "humanity" and “fraternity” and often translated as “I am because we are”.

Ubuntu est un concept d'Afrique australe impliquant «l'humanité» et la «fraternité» et souvent traduit par «je suis parce que nous sommes».

What is a human being? How to define it? What is a human being? How is a human being defined in relation to his species, or to other species? How has humanity been considered? In what way does this consideration, or its limits, play a major role in the balance of the world?... (to be completed)

Qu’est-ce qu’un être humain ? Comment le définir ? Qu’est–ce que l’être humain ? Comment définit–on l’être humain par rapport à son espèce, ou aux autres espèces ? Comment a–t–on considéré l’humanité ? En quoi cette considération, ou ses limites, jouent-elles un rôle majeur dans l’équilibre du monde ?... (à compléter)

South Africa

South Africa

South Africa is a country in Africa. Its capitals are: Pretoria; Cape Town; Bloemfontein. Its official languages are: Zulu; Xhosa; Afrikaans. Other languages include: Afrikaans; English; Southern Ndebele; Sotho; Northern Sotho; Swazi; Tsonga; Tswana; Venda; Xhosa; Zulu. Its currency is: Rand.

Code: ZA | ZAF
FR: Afrique du Sud
DE: Südafrika
IT: Sudafrica
ES: Sudáfrica
ZH: 南非
PI: nánfēi
JA: 南アフリカ
RO: Minamiafurika
Capital: Pretoria
Wolfgat restaurant

Wolfgat restaurant

Wolfgat restaurant in Paternoster, South Africa - Named the best Restaurant in the World for 2019 by the international World Restaurant Awards (which celebrate places for their cultural value). Chef: Kobus van der Merwe. Location: a 130-year-old fisherman cottage. Principle: "…a golden ratio, between the amount of people we serve, what we can collect from the wild (a kind of 'Strandveld food'), what the team (can do) and the size of the building it's comfortable with."

Restaurant Wolfgat à Paternoster, Afrique du Sud - Nommé meilleur restaurant du monde 2019 selon le World Restaurant Awards (récompensant les lieux pour leur valeur culturelle). Chef : Kobus van der Merwe. Lieu : une maison de pêcheur vieille de 130 ans. Principe : "… un nombre d'or, entre le nombre de personnes que nous servons, ce que nous pouvons collecter dans la nature, ce que l'équipe (peut faire) et la taille du bâtiment avec lequel ceci correspond."



Khoisan people or Khoe-Sān - A term designating the "non-Bantu" indigenous peoples of Southern Africa, including the Khoekhoen (or "Khoikhoi") and the Sān (or Sākhoen) - Formerly known as “Hottentots” – speaking Khoesān (or Khoisan) languages.

Peuple Khosan - Terme global désignant les peuples autochtones de l'Afrique australe "non-bantous", comprenant les Khoïkhoï et les Sankhoïs - Autrefois appelés "Hottentots" – Ils parlent les langues khoïsan. ï

Johnny Clegg

Johnny Clegg

Jonathan Paul Clegg or Johnny Clegg (1953 –2019) - A South African musician and anthropologist. After the disbanding of Juluka, he founded a multi-racial band named Savuka in 1986. Sometimes called Le Zoulou Blanc ("The White Zulu"), he is famous for his resistance to apartheid.

Johnny Clegg (With Nelson Mandela) - Asimbonanga - 1999

Jonathan Paul Clegg ou Johnny Clegg (1953-2019) - Musicien et anthropologue sud-africain. Après la dissolution de son premier groupe Juluka, il fonde en 1986 un groupe multiracial nommé Savuka. Parfois appelé « Le Zoulou Blanc », il est connu pour sa résistance à l’apartheid.

Khoisan lg

Name of an obsolete group of African languages originally classified together by Joseph Greenberg refering to languages that share a heavy use of click consonants and do not belong to other African language families. Now divided in three distinct language families and two language isolates.

ISO 639-2 Code: khi

Family: Khoisan lgs
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