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Culture of Gabon

The Gabonese tribal culture was greatly undermined by the stronger French cultural and social influences. As a result, the traditional ways and life styles have undergone immense change and many of the original folk songs and dances have actually disappeared under the onslaught of oil money.

Amongst its traditional crafts, Gabon gives pride of place to wooden masks made for tribal rites and rituals. The masks were believed to have occult powers and were a means of keeping in touch with the dead. These masks are really awesome and put the fear of God in many of the early Christian missionaries but also inspired European masters like Matisse and Picasso.

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