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Dinka Lady - South Sudan
Painting - Enamels On Ceramics
The Dinka have settlements across areas where they live. Traditionally in most circumstances, related families settle close to each other, becoming a village, sub-clan, and clan. However, several unrelated clans make up a sub-tribe, then Dinka tribe from several of them. And each family home estate owns land with borders from its neighbors. The first settlers always accommodate new settlers and allow them to be part of their community. The family cultivates that land during rainy seasons for food consumption. On the other hand, the unoccupied land is preserved for communal activities such as cattle grazing, fishing, hunting, and future developments since they practice shifting cultivation system.
The Dinka language is Thuongjang. Thuongjang is spoken by all Dinkas at family settings, community and national levels though it has some variations in words and pronunciations from sub-tribe to sub-tribe. These variations demonstrate vastness of the Dinka. Also Thuongjang is expressed through names given to people, places, and animals. For instance, Werkok and Barpakeny are names of places. Dinka share some names (Deng, Ajak, Gai, and chol) with some tribes such as Nuer, Shilluk, and Jur. This name similarity proves that these tribes were connected in the past, and are truly River Lake Nilotes according to the History of the Eastern Africa.
November 2nd, 2012
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