Dogon, Tomo Kan in Mali

Provided by Joshua Project
Dogon, Tomo Kan
Photo Source:  Wild West Africa Connection 
Map Source:  Anonymous
People Name: Dogon, Tomo Kan
Country: Mali
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 254,000
World Population: 302,000
Primary Language: Dogon, Tomo Kan
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Christian Adherents: 20.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Portions
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Gur
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Dogons live in a dry remote savannah area in Mali, spilling over into Burkina Faso. About 20 different languages are spoken in different communities. Unless they learn the language spoken by a neighbor they would not understand each other even though they all identify themselves ethically as Dogon. The Tomo are one of these.

Dogon territory includes a rocky plateau in the West and a sandy plain in the east separated by a 400-700 meter high sheer cliff. The Dogon built their first villages in caves in this cliff, safe from the slave raiders. Isolated and distrustful of outsiders, they grew into a scattering of micro-communities, eventually each with a different language.

The Tomo live southwest of the Bandiagara Escarpment and should not be confused with the Tombo who live on the plateau. They are the largest of the Dogon peoples by population. Along with other West African peoples, they are expert weavers in beautiful colors and designs cotton, silk or fibers extracted from bombax fruits. Woven blankets have been found dating back to the 11th and 12th centuries AD.

What Are Their Beliefs?

For centuries, the Dogon have resisted Islam. But as society modernizes, they are increasingly deciding that animistic religion is no longer adequate and grudgingly accept Islam for lack of an alternative or become Christians. The Église Chrétienne Evangélique church as well as the Roman Catholic church have each roughly between 20,000 and 25,000 members (children included).

Text Source:   Anonymous