A handful of the “lost boys of Sudan”—the 26,000 children who fled civil war on foot—are on the big screen endearing themselves to American audiences. Four thousand were delivered from a United Nations refugee camp to various communities in the U.S. in 2001. A few of them are the subjects of a just-released National Geographic documentary, God Grew Tired of Us.
In Dinka Bor tradition, long ebony shafts serve as walking sticks for the elderly, as scepters for newly married women and as weapons for initiates into manhood. Wooden spears are vital to Dinka cattle herders moving through alien territory. Hardwood branches, carved by Christian evangelists into crosses, are still implements of worship.