Information about the Baka

AFRICA - Explore the Regions - Rainforest
Choose a country, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Rep. ... Life hangs in thebalance for the Baka people of Bosquet, Cameroon, a village of 600
"http://www.pbs.org/wnet/africa/explore/rainforest/rainforest_series_lo.html" '1','')"

AFRICA - Explore the Regions - Rainforest
Choose a country, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Rep. ... The Baka believethat when disaster strikes, the rainforest has gone to sleep.
"http://www.pbs.org/wnet/africa/explore/rainforest/rainforest_music_lo.html" '2','')"

The Baka Project, Cameroon, West Africa - for the Baka Pygmies
The goal of the Baka project is emancipation of the Baka pygmies in theirtraditional environment — camps in their forest. The project is active in the
"http://baka.sitewala.net/english/" '3','')"

BBC NEWS | Africa | House of the Baka Beyond
An African-Celtic band inspired by the music of a pygmy tribe in west Africabuild a "music house" with the royalties.
"http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/4351479.stm" '4','')"

NativeWeb Home
Baka Pygmies of Cameroon, Africa, 0. Cameroon Culture and music of this group... Baka Website, Africa, 1116. This site has information about the life and
"http://www.nativeweb.org/resources.php?name=Africa&type=2&location=313" '5','')"

NativeWeb Resources: Africa
Baka Website, Africa, 1116. This site has information about the life and musicof the Baka Forest People, Pygmies from SE Cameroon. Mzunguwamap, Africa, 828
"http://www.nativeweb.org/resources/nations_web_sites_information/africa/" '6','')"

Documentaries about Africa -Politics, history, nature and wildlife ...
The dense rain forest of Central Africa's Congo River Basin is home to the Bakapeople. But logging of the forest's old-growth timber could permanently
"http://crawfurd.dk/africa/documentaries.htm" '7','')"

National Geographic Live! Baka Beyond
Photograph courtesy Baka Beyond. Made up of nine musicians from the Celtic fringeof Western Europe and the west coast of Africa, Baka Beyond is in the
"http://www.nationalgeographic.com/nglive/washingtondc/concerts/baka0408.html" '8','')"

WRM Bulletin Nº 70 - Africa / May 2003
AFRICA. Cameroon: Baka Livelihoods Damaged by EU-funded Protected Areas. Rwanda:Indigenous Batwa Opening Channels of Cooperation with Conservation
"http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/70/AF.html" '9','')"

WRM Bulletin Nº 87 - Africa / October 2004
Indigenous Baka number 30-40000 and live in the southern and southeastern ...For almost all Baka, Bagyeli and Bakola, their forest is their ancestral home,
"http://www.wrm.org.uy/bulletin/87/AF.html" '10','')"

African Baka People Crowded Out by Newcomers, Loggers
African Baka People Crowded Out by Newcomers, Loggers.***********************************************. Forest Networking a Project ofEcological
"http://forests.org/archived_site/today/recent/1997/afrnonel.htm" '11','')"

In between Africa trips Baka Beyond were extensively touring and when not on the... Over the years of visiting and making music with the Baka in Africa,
"http://www.baka.co.uk/bakab/interviews_publicservantlifestyle.html" '12','')"

BAKA BEYOND BIOGRAPHY ... The Baka are renowned throughout Africa as masters ofdance and Dee took this opportunity to develop her dancing skills with them.
"http://www.baka.co.uk/bakab/Baka_bio.html" '13','')"

Rock Paper Scissors - Baka Beyond, Rhythm Tree (March Hare Music ...
We try to do the same in Baka Beyond.? In between trips to Africa, Baka Beyondhas toured extensively and worked in their studio in Bath.
"http://www.rockpaperscissors.biz/index.cfm/fuseaction/current.press_release/project_id/229.cfm" '14','')"

NOVICA - K. Baka
K. Baka "For my paintings, many a time I see them in dreams and visions before I... (West Africa) $62.95, Batik wall hanging, 'Faa Naa Yoo - Woman from the
"http://www.novica.com/artistdetail/index.cfm?faid=840" '15','')"

NOVICA - Wall Hangings & Tapestries - Batik (Ghana)
...(West Africa) $62.95, Batik wall hanging, 'Aklowa by Night' by K. Baka ...Batik wall hanging, 'Proud African Elephant' by K. Baka (West Africa) $109.95
"http://www.novica.com/art/wall-hangings-and-tapestries/batik-ghana/index.cfm?c=502&l=4&sortby=&maxrows=42" '16','')"

The Unreached Peoples Prayer Profiles
The Pygmies of Central Africa. [IMAGE] Over 150000 unreached Pygmies live in thetropical rain ... but polygyny does exist, especially among the Baka.
"http://www.ksafe.com/profiles/clusters/8012.html" '17','')"

2005 Celtic Classic - Bethlehem, PA
Over the years of visiting and making music with the Baka in Africa, Baka Beyond has... The Baka are renowned throughout Africa as masters of dance,
"http://www.celticfest.org/CelticFest05/Baka-Beyond.php" '18','')"

Rambles: Martin Cradick & Baka Beyond
Cradick and his band, Baka Beyond, combines Celtic/European and African styles... When Baka Beyond first began incorporating African rhythms into its music
"http://www.rambles.net/baka_beinterview05.html" '19','')"

Mauro Campagnoli - Website
...(1975- ) Ethnomusicologist and composer. Includes works and biography, andinformation about his fieldworks in equatorial Africa among Baka Pygmies.
"http://www.maurocampagnoli.com/" '20','')"

Baka Pygmies
ENVIRONMENT; African rainforest: nature and landscapes of the Baka Pygmies forest... FIELDWORK in AFRICA; Becaming a member of a Baka Pygmy clan
"http://www.maurocampagnoli.com/baka/" '21','')"

Ethnologue report for Central African Republic
List of languages of Central African Republic. ... Dialects: May be intelligiblewith Baka. Classification: Niger-Congo, Atlantic-Congo, Volta-Congo, North,
"http://www.ethnologue.com/show_country.asp?name=Central+African+Republic" '22','')"

Baka Beyond MP3, Songs and Albums
MP3.com has Baka Beyond news, albums, songs, mp3s and the Baka Beyond community.... A fusion of Celtic and West African musical traditions,
"http://www.mp3.com/baka-beyond/artists/35670/summary.html" '23','')"

Baka Beyond Biography
The BEST SITE for the biography of Baka Beyond. ... A fusion of Celtic and WestAfrican musical traditions, the band represents a collaboration of musicians
"http://www.mp3.com/baka-beyond/artists/35670/biography.html" '24','')"

The Africa Guide - Cameroon ( Cameroun) - Music
The music of the Baka pygmy culture is captured here by former Outback guitarist... inspiring african jazz Mboa'Su by Manu Dibango (amazon.com) - USA
"http://www.africaguide.com/country/cameroon/music.htm" '25','')"

The Case Against New Fossil Fuel Exploration
There is a huge new boom in oil exploration throughout Central Africa. ...The so-called "pygmy" peoples - the Baka and Bakola - and their home,
"http://www.ran.org/oilreport/africa.html" '26','')"

Central African CD Reviews
Only the folks of Baka Beyond had actually gone to Africa, lived, ... They continueto make trips to Africa to play with the Baka, building the Baka a music
"http://www.worlddiscoveries.net/Central%20African%20CD%20Reviews.htm" onmousedown="return clk('http://www.worlddiscoveries.net/Central%20African%20CD%20Reviews.htm','res','27','')"

Baka pygmy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Unlike most other Central African pygmy groups, the Baka maintain a uniquelanguage, also called Baka. It is included in the Adamawa-Ubangi branch of the
"http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baka_pygmy" '28','')"

UVa Music Library: Services
CD 00139 [BAKA PEOPLE]; Jali Kunda : Griots of West Africa & beyond. CD 06993;Mandinka kora, Gambie. LP 3746 [MANDINGO PEOPLE]
"http://www.lib.virginia.edu/MusicLib/guides/wrld-disc-afr.html" '29','')"

Rhapsody Radish - Playlist Blog - Free Streaming Playlists
G'Bendi, An :: Earth Bow - Baka Pygmies 12. Hindewhu - Africa-Ba-Benzele Pygmy 13.Third Story: The Fruit Eater - Africa-Ba-Benzele Pygmy
"http://www.scopecreep.com/Rhapsody/2005/08/pygmy-jam-list-pygmy-is-racial.html" '30','')"

More information from Wikipedia.org:
The Baka, also known as Bebayaka, Bebayaga, Bibaya, or Babinga, are a Pygmy ethnic group inhabiting the southeastern rain forests of Cameroon, northern Congo (Brazzaville), northern Gabon, and southwestern Central African Republic. They are sometimes mistakenly called a subgroup of the Twa pygmies, but the two peoples are not closely related. Likewise, the name Baka is sometimes mistakenly applied to any of Cameroon's two to nine recognized pygmy populations. With an average height of 1.5 metres, the Baka are, strictly speaking, pygmoids rather than pygmies. Nevertheless, in everyday usage, the term "pygmy" is employed. The Baka themselves find the term "pygmy" derogatory and prefer their tribal name.

The Baka of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan are an unrelated people.



The Baka's exact numbers are difficult to determine, but estimates range from 5,000 to 28,000 individuals.


Unlike most other Central African pygmy groups, the Baka maintain a unique language, also called Baka. It is included in the Adamawa-Ubangi branch of the Niger-Congo language family. In addition, many Baka speak Koozime, the tongue of their Bantu neighbours, as a second language. A much smaller percentage speak French.


The Baka are a hunter-gatherer people. Groups establish temporary camps of huts constructed of bowed branches covered in large leaves (though today more and more homes are constructed following Bantu methods). The men hunt and trap in the surrounding forest, employing poisoned arrows and spears to great effect. Meanwhile, the women gather wild fruits and nuts or practice beekeeping while tending to the children. The group remains in one area until it is hunted out then abandon the camp for a different portion of the forest. The group is communal and makes decisions by consensus.

Religion and belief-systems

Baka religion is animist. They worship a forest spirit known as Jengi or Djengi, whom they perceive as both a parental figure and guardian. Each successful hunt is followed by a dance of thanksgiving known as the Luma, which is accompanied by drumming and polyphonic singing. Another traditional ceremony is the Jengi (not to be confused with the god), which celebrates a boy's passage into adulthood. The Baka practice traditional medicine, and their skills are such that even non-Baka often seek out pygmy healers for treatment.


The Baka live relatively symbiotically with their Bantu neighbours. They often set their camps along roadsides to better facilitate trade; the Baka provide forest game in exchange for produce and manufactured goods. Nevertheless, exploitation of the Baka by other ethnic groups is a grave reality, especially since the Baka are still largely unaccustomed to the cash-based economy. Non-Baka sometimes hire Baka pygmies as labourers, for example, but pay them virtually nothing for a full day's work. Or, conscious of the tourism potential, some non-Baka arrange visits or stays in pygmy villages or arrange Baka guides for visitors to forest reserves, often with little compensation to the pygmies. Rates of Baka-Bantu intermarriage are also on the rise. Baka who marry outside of their ethnic group typically adopt the lifestyle of their non-Baka spouse, so some scholars predict that the pygmies will one day be completely assimilated into other groups.

The Baka are among the oldest inhabitants of Cameroon and the neighbouring countries. Their semi-nomadic lifestyle has persisted largely unchanged for thousands of years, despite the fact that during colonialism, the Baka's prowess at elephant hunting prompted ivory-hungry German and French overlords to force them to settle in roadside villages where their talents could be more easily exploited. The government of Cameroon, while stopping short of forced settlement, has attempted to maintain this policy through government incentives and regulations such as mandatory schooling for all children. However, the Baka largely resist. Today, the greatest threat to their way of life comes from multinational logging interests. As the forests disappear, the animals and plants upon which the Baka rely vanish as well.

  • Fanso, V.G. (1989) Cameroon History for Secondary Schools and Colleges, Vol. 1: From Prehistoric Times to the Nineteenth Century. Hong Kong: Macmillan Education Ltd.
  • Neba, Aaron, Ph.D. (1999) Modern Geography of the Republic of Cameroon, 3rd ed. Bamenda: Neba Publishers.

The above includes excerpts from Wikipedia.org, the free encyclopedia:

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