Introduction / History
The Toussian live in the area south of Bobo-Dioulasso in the southern part of Burkina Faso, where the climate is pleasant and the rains ample for Burkina standards. Yet the southern Toussian's agricultural exploits are difficult to achieve since the soil is exhausted, although there are good roads that would make transportation of agricultural goods from the southern Toussiana area to the main centers easy. In the north there are good soils and no roads.
The Toussian's region is in the area between two major roads (the one to Bobo and the one to Orodara) and there are no good roads connecting these two axes. Despite this difficulty there is a fruit project in development in the northern part of the region. The main fruit grown there is the mango fruit. Besides agriculture the area lacks employment opportunities, a situation which results in unemployment during the dry season. Thus many people emigrate to more affluent places.
Some of the Toussian houses can be easily recognized by their main material of construction, which is stone. The chief's courtyard is not very distinct in its degree of elaborateness or size. It is just a courtyard like all the others, a fact which reflects the chief's limited power. The extended families live in courtyards and are organized by a head of the family and his sub-heads. Most of the political power is in the hands of the administrative officials, though. The Toussian are bilingual in Jula, yet more so the men than the women. Thus not everybody can understand the Jula translations of the French preaching in church. Especially the women understand very limited parts of the preaching which makes a Bible translation into their mother tongue desirable.
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