: Motherhood and Ritual Killing

Karos are the only tribe that practice Mingi killing by putting dirt in their newborn children’s mouths and leaving them in the bush to die. No bull jumping was practiced for fifteen years because of a war across the river with the Nyangatom. During this time, this mother had twelve children and killed all of them. Her betrothed was not technically a man, and he could not be legally married, which meant her children were not legitimate. The Ethiopian government has tried to work with tribes to end the practice. 

Her face shows no smile, but she stomps the dust and listens to the sound the bells make around her knees. Then she scurries around to collect firewood, carry water to the water drums, and boil water that will be added to fermented sorghum paste for the evening celebration. Water from the Omo River is silt-laden, good for agriculture but not great for drinking. 


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