Pokot Initiate with Ochred Veil, Kenya

Carol Beckwith

African Ceremonies

African Ceremonies

For a month before their initiation ceremony of Pokot boys wearing ochre sisal veils, live within the sacred forest, guided and protected by ritual guardian fathers. The concealing veils indicate they are in a state of limbo, no longer a boy but not yet a man. During their isolation from the community they will learn the discipline of silence and the activities expected of men in the next stage of life: constructing fires, making bows and arrows and learning about Pokot codes of behaviour and ways to protect the community. Only when the boy completes his training can he leave the sacred forest, part his veil and look at the world outside as a young man.

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  • Title: Pokot Initiate with Ochred Veil, Kenya
  • Creator: Angela Fisher & Carol Beckwith
  • Location Created: Kenya