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Agriculture in Mali

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  1. Introduction
  2. The beginning of Nationalists drift
    1. The progressive integration of Jews
    2. The legacy of traditional Judaism
    3. Persistent prejudices
  3. The rise of antisemitism in the 1880s
    1. The Jew, 'scapegoat of modernity '
    2. Strengthening the construction of identity in race
    3. Discomfort spread by the press and the literature
  4. The violent antisemitism led to a division of corporations
    1. Of termination to the exclusion
    2. The instrumentalization of anti-Semitism by political forces
    3. Zionism, a response to the barbaric antisemitism

The Dogon Country is a region of eastern Mali which in the form of a sandstone plateau and a vast plain that extends into Burkina Faso. It is also denotes a specific people who have been studied since the early twentieth century by experts in the field of anthropology. A substantial literature has developed, which is however, limited to the study of myths and customs, including masks. However, it is only recently that literature has begun looking at everyday life and the agricultural sector in Dogon.

However, the issue of agriculture is central to the understanding of this society, because the local economy is based almost exclusively on cereal agriculture. Despite the fact that the morphology and rainfall unique to this environment are the brakes to this activity, Dogon agriculture is recognized throughout Mali, as well as in neighboring countries for the marketing of onions. The question we will study is, why is agriculture based mainly on cereals, when the region is known for marketing massive amounts of fresh produce?

The Saharan zone covers two thirds of the area of Mali, the Sahel region in the center, the Sudanian zone and pre Guinean in the southwest. The climate is characterized by two successive seasons of varying length. During the rainy season, the climate is fairly mild but wet. During the rest of the year, the weather is dry. The country is desert in the most part, but the south is bordered by Niger, locally called Djoliba. The rainy season normally takes place between July and September.

As we can see on the map, the Dogon country is at the heart of Sahel. This is a semi-arid environment. Drought is a reality nine months out of twelve in this region, hence the adaptation of vegetation of steppes. During the short rainy season in July and August, the average monthly water intake is important, it rises from 100 to 200 mm per month, as well as in humid savannah regions of the extreme south.

The water is not inherently scarce. However, we should qualify this statement because periods are marked by a limited supply of water. Like most of Sahel, the Dogon have had four periods of drought during the last century, interspersed with almost a return to "normal." However, these returns to "normal" describe a return to rainfall for crops. However, the amount of rainfall has continued to decline since the beginning of last century. In 1913 and 1914, 568 mm of precipitation was the amount received by a region that annually receives 700 mm. When comparing the average annual rainfall between 1922 and 1982, there was a difference of 284 mm from 640 mm to 356 mm, this decline is significant in an area where rainfall is already low. The decrease in the amount of precipitation is central to the study of changes in agriculture because, according to these figures, Dogon has to feed a population of increasing numbers with 4.73 mm of precipitation in less than a year.

Tags: Dogon, savannah, Saharan zone

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