Murle understandings of friendship – a personal account

Friends from Lanngo age-set on their way to a dance, Lotilla River, April 2015

Written by MK, contributor from Pibor Murle are very proud of their rich culture and will go miles to maintain it. Friendship, in Murle language known as ‘langotizet‘, has always been central to Murle culture and that can be seen also through how the very important social institution of the age-sets is experienced and lived.… Continue reading Murle understandings of friendship – a personal account

Introduction to Lanngo age-set

Lanngo youth with scarifications of AK-47s, to reflect his sub-group. Kong Kong River, Pibor May 2015

By Lauryen Oleyo Langgo age-set is one of the Murle age-sets that emerged from Bothothnya age-set in 2005. Langgo age-set started first from Irit village in Greater Kubal region (Gumuruk County) and spread to other bomas within Greater Kubal up to 2007. They were firstknown as Nuknuknya and later changed their name to Langgo. The… Continue reading Introduction to Lanngo age-set

Introduction to Bothothnya age-set

By Lauryen Oleyo Bothothnya age-set first emerged in 1999/2000 and spread through Greater Pibor over those years eventually reaching the last place of Boma in 2006. The idea of forming a new age-set was first discussed secretly in 1998 by some of the younger members of the younger part of Titi, known as Jiri, from… Continue reading Introduction to Bothothnya age-set

Introduction to Kurenen age-set

By Lauryen Oleyo Kurenen (meaning deer in Murle) are currently the youngest age-set in Murle that emerged in 2013/14 in Kongor and spread to other areas and was eventually accepted in Pibor 2017. They are not yet present in Boma. The age-set chose the giraffe (Thagot) as their token animal, for its beauty, humility and… Continue reading Introduction to Kurenen age-set

The Kabarze: a novel platform for women’s involvement in age-set tensions

Women from Kabarze from different age-sets in Manyirany coming together to sing and dance together. Manyirang payam in Pibor, September 2017.

Age-sets have often been understood as fundamentally male institutions, and to some extent this is true. However, women also belong to age-sets, first their father’s and eventually their husband’s. They are also the mothers of boys and men who are themselves from age-sets and that gives women, especially as mothers, a very powerful and influential… Continue reading The Kabarze: a novel platform for women’s involvement in age-set tensions

Chief Ngantho on origins of red chiefs and Ngaroti clan

Post prepared by Johnson Kengen Ababal guzul zɔna ee aze guzul zarɛ Akun rɛna ee akunai zɛɛm ci baba ee bal azi baba nɛ alam guzul ci loro o baba nyumur ee anyek kidoŋ korok o tobak kidoŋ cava This song, by the late paramount chief Ngantho Kavula from Dorongwa age-set, is about a hyena… Continue reading Chief Ngantho on origins of red chiefs and Ngaroti clan

A brief life history of Sultan Ismael Konyi

Sultan Ismael Konyi is for many people the greatest Murle leader that has ever lived. He was one of the most prominent political, military and spiritual leaders of the Murle community, until he passed away age the age of 80 in Juba on the 10th March 2021. Over his long life, he successfully drew upon… Continue reading A brief life history of Sultan Ismael Konyi

Murle proverbs and popular knowledge

Cattle grazing in Kong Kong River, Pibor May 2015

Proverbs are windows into the popular knowledge of a society. Several Murle language everyday expressions reveal the intrinsic importance of cattle in Murle society. This post, continuously updated with proverbs, presents and explains some of these expressions, related to cattle but also to other popular knowledge. When an elder greets youth, he will often say… Continue reading Murle proverbs and popular knowledge