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CULTURE

Senegal plays a key role in West Africa's arts, culture, and politics, despite its small size and population.  For the last three centuries, Senegal has inspired poets, novelists, and researchers, emerging as one of the most significant patrons of the arts in all of Africa. Led to independence by internationally acclaimed poet and philosopher Leopold Senghor, Senegal has throughout its history emphasized the role of arts and culture in society

Having chosen to live in Senegal, you have chosen to grapple with an entirely new society whose values, priorities and goals may be quite different from those in which you have been brought up.

SOME CULTURAL DIFFERENCES:

When entering a room or a new situation, be sure to shake everyone's hand
* When speaking with older people, remember the importance of respect for elders
* Male/female relationships are mostly initiated by men in Senegal ;
* When you go to visit someone's home and family, take a small gift.
* Senegalese do not use their left hand in eating, handing out things , or greeting people. Avoid doing so as it will appear extremely rude
* People use floor mats to serve meals on
* Do NOT walk in front of people who are praying
*The emphasis on time is quite different in Senegal than it is in the West. Things move more slowly, and there's a greater emphasis on relationships, rather than how many tasks one can accomplish in one day.
* It is customary to escort your guests out of your house after entertaining them and to walk them down the street or even back to their house if it's not too far.