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In Senegal, an ancestral concept that comes from Wolof, one of the 39 languages that the country is home to, guides the way people interact with each other.

"Teranga emphasises generosity of spirit and sharing in all encounters, even with strangers; sharing time and enjoying it, feeling that the other person is with you, in the same place: here and now. “Teranga is not just a word, it is a political structure, conveying meaning and dynamism, because life evolves,” says Abdourahmane Seck, professor at Gaston Berger University in St Louis, Senegal.

In the etymology of Teranga there are several roots within. Namely: “ter“, which is like landing, after a journey, is to arrive on dry land after a long journey, because it is used especially in the field of fishermen, and names the encounter that makes us exist (before the arrival we do not exist); “teu” has to do with waiting, but it is not about passive waiting but about preparing the place and acclaiming the one who arrives; “teran” conveys the idea of attaining one’s own meaning, or the possibility of truly becoming oneself, or the fullness of being, and finally “terang“, which speaks of receiving with care, taking care of the other, because the other is someone equal to oneself“, according to the expression of the Senegalese anthropologist" [1]


  1. Teranga: solidarity lives in Senegal, RIPESS Intercontinental, May 2023