Ituri Forest Pygmies | Who Rules the Forest? National Geographic Magazine: Bantu Leader Whips Pygmy Boy | Manhood Ritual | Ituri Forest, DR Congo

Bantu Leader Whips Pygmy Boy | Manhood Ritual | Ituri Forest, DR Congo

Bantu Leader Whips Pygmy Boy | Manhood Ritual | Ituri Forest, DR Congo

The whipping is more severe on the last day of the nKumbi and includes a ceremony where the boys are secluded within a phalanx of men all carrying whips. The men are met halfway thru the village with women carrying whips and a melee ensues, the intent is to control the destiny of the child. The women want the boy to stay a boy and the men want the boy to be acknowledged as a man. The men win. The boy is now a man and cannot be claimed as a child anymore by his mother. There is also ritual scarification on this day and each boy is paraded, one by one, thru the village accompanied by a masked elder and someone to collect the money being thrown at his dancing feet.

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