TOURNEZ S'IL VOUS PLAIT, ARTE FRANCE
German, English, French
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Wale is still considered to be a child in his tribe, but at age 20, he is now old enough to face the challenge that will make him a man. “Ukuli Bula” is a bull jumping ceremony. The idea is to jump three times over a series of bulls lined up in a row, without falling over.
If the young man, or Ukuli fails, he will be mocked by the village and will not be able to marry.
Khaya, Wale’s little sister, is also undergoing a trial. Hamar tradition says that she must prove her devotion to her brother by having her back whipped. The day of the ceremony, the young women, friends and family of the Ukuli go to the site of the ritual, singing and dancing. Then, the whipping starts.
The young women tease them men until they agree to whip them. For Hamar women, this is both proof of personal courage, and a mark of love for the Ukuli. Finally, it’s time to jump. The cattle are lined up, flank to flank, held by the horns. Now the Ukuli will know if he’ll become a man or not.