15th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Travel

Among Ethiopia’s Mursi tribe, the Donga, Stick Fight is a way for young men to prove themselves to the young women. This ritual is called Donga. Donga is both the name of the sport and the stick they use for the fight. Stick fight is central in Mursi culture. In most cases, stick fight is a way for warriors to find girlfriends, it can also be a way to settle conflicts. On this occasion men show their courage, their virility and their resistance to pain, to the young women. The fights are held between Mursi villages, and begin with 20 to 30 people on each side, and can end up with hundreds of warriors involved. We visited a Mursi village when we herd about this Donga and we wanted to see. It was not allowed as they organized it in a secret place, inside the Mago Park, where the government not allows to visit them. We managed to attend, but it was not very safe situation and we had to be fast with the photos as well.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 10.2016
Date Uploaded: 11.2017
Photo Location: Omo Valley, Ethiopia
Camera: NIKON D5300
Copyright: © Gabriella Kiss Dr