BEFORE THEY PASS AWAY.HAMAR tribe. ETHIOPIA by Jimmy Nelson

BEFORE THEY PASS AWAY.

HAMAR tribe. ETHIOPIA by Jimmy Nelson

Hamar parents have a lot of control over their sons, who herd the cattle and goats for the family. It’s the parents who give permission for the men
to marry, and many don’t get married until their mid-thirties. Girls, on the other hand, tend to marry at about 17.

Marriage requires ‘bride wealth’, a payment made to the woman’s family
and generally made up of goats, cattle and guns. Although it’s paid over
time like instalments of a bank loan, it’s so high (30 goats and 20 head
of cattle) that it can’t usually be paid back in a lifetime.

Some other aspects are remarkable: the Hamar are seriously pre-occupied with their appearance. They have at times spectular coiffures, especially the men. Even their way of sleeping is determined by their hair-do, as they use a wooden pillow that prevents the hair from touching the ground. They have three names: a human name, a goat name, and a cow name, which emphasizes the enormous role of cattle in their lives.

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