Conclusion, and THANK YOU!

Traveling 7000km through the Fulani heartland, we’ve had a rare opportunity to garner insights on the beauty and richness of Fulani culture. At the same time, we’ve discovered that it would take years – even decades – to truly do justice to this project. We visited fewer than half of the countries inhabited by the Fulani, and we only produced a few stories per country. For every question answered, dozens more were raised. Nonetheless, we hope this collection of documentary vignettes will promote understanding of this complex and nuanced culture.

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Throughout our journey, people asked us about our objective: what was our message? What story had we come to tell? In reality, we didn’t begin with a firm idea of how the project would shape up. We didn’t know what route we’d take or who would host us. We counted on the Fulani people themselves to define this project, and we were lucky to discover fascinating stories. As such, the Pulaku Project didn’t yield one cohesive documentary, but rather a collection of stories that illustrate the diversity of Fulani culture.

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We’re deeply indebted to the dozens of communities who welcomed us along the way. They opened their homes and huts to a two dusty guys on motorcycles, and they treated us like family. Many chickens lost their lives, as delicious meals were prepared in celebration of our arrival. At every turn, we were amazed by the hospitality of the Fulani community and the richness of stories they shared with us.

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As we conclude our project, we realize we’ve only scratched the surface of Fulani culture. As such, we intend for the Pulaku Project to remain online as a venue for stories and articles about this unique population. We invite YOU to contribute. If you have an article, photo essay, or video about Fulani culture, please CONTACT us about sharing it through the Pulaku Project.

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We are deeply grateful to our supporters and hosts who made this project possible.

Thanks to you, we were able to undertake this endeavor to visit, document and share the culture of the Fulani people.

THANK YOU to those who purchased images to finance our project (your prints will be ready in June).

THANK YOU to those who followed our project online and sent messages of support along the way.

THANK YOU to Rohan Mahy for building our website, and our friends and family who helped behind the scenes.

THANK YOU to the generous communities and individuals who hosted us along our journey:

Salomon MATCHOUDO – Cotonou, Benin

Theresa and Bertrand SONDJO – Cotonou, Benin

Dave COWELL – Parakou, Benin

Wahab TOKO – Pehunko, Benin

Clayton CARROLL – Natitingou, Benin

Djibril Souleyman SOW – Mango, Togo

President of the Peul Association – Mango, Togo

Mohamed BARRY – Dapaong, Togo

Ousmane DIALLO – Cinkansse, Togo

Chief of the Peuls of Kongou – Kongou, Ghana

Sheikh Hajji Idrissa DIALLO – Wungu, Ghana

Abdoulaye BARRY – Bittou, Burkina Faso

Dian DIALLO – Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

Mamoudou DICKO – Djibo, Burkina Faso

Abdoulaye BARRY – Ouahigouya, Burkina Faso

Moussa SINNINTA – Bandiagara, Mali

Samuel GOUDA – Sevare, Mali

Abby SMITH – Djenne, Mali

Oumar – Bamako, Mali

Dinde SARE – Bamako, Mali

Ryan VROEGINDEWEY – Bamako, Mali

Ramata BARRY – Bamako, Mali

Annie NAGY and Ryan DURKOPP – Kankan, Guinea

Hassan BAH – Douki, Guinea

Head of the Peul of Samecouta – Samecouta-Peul, Senegal

Abou THIAM Ngaari-Laaw – Dakar, Senegal

We also owe a special thank you to the members of Tabitaal Pulaaku, (the international Fulani association) and their online community, Jamaa (Jamaa@tabitalpulaaku-international.org)!

We’d like to conclude with a selection of our favorite images:


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Benin

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Togo

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Burkina Faso


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Ghana


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Mali


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Burkina Faso


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Togo




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Mali




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Benin




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Burkina Faso




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Togo




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Senegal




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Guinea




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Senegal




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Mali



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Guinea




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Mali


As they say in Fulfulde/Pulaar: “mi yeti!” – thank you for your support!

~ Guida and Christoph

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2 Responses to “Conclusion, and THANK YOU!”

  1. Shari Crist says:

    Thank you, thank you, for this beautiful project. I am so sad that you are finished, and so happy that you are keeping this site up. I will use it when I teach my Africa unit to elementary school students here in Colorado, so they will have authentic stories and images, and I will use it when I teach my graduate teacher candidates as well. I have to say that I cried when I read that this was the last post. I hope that you both will find a way to continue to do this important ethnographic work. Guida, you have become a fine photographer!
    Bonne Chance,
    Maman Jessica et Carl

  2. Angene Wilson says:

    I’m delighted that some of your pictures and the project will be highlighted in the upcoming issue of National Peace Corps Association’s WorldView Magazine. I’m going to suggest some ways to use this wonderful material in my regular 9-12 column for the next NPCA newsletter. As someone who has lived and taught through Peace Corps and Fulbright in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Ghana, and traveled in northern Nigeria, Guinea, Mali and Senegal I really appreciate what you’ve done. The photography is terrific. I especially appreciate that the team was American and Fulani and that you ended with urbanized Fulani. Too often, even with the wonderful RPCV Madison calendar, we focus on the traditional, “different” to Americans culture and thus pictures. Thank you.


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