Ouagadougou - Post Report Question and Answers

Are there problems with ethnic, race/racial minorities or religious prejudices? Gender equality?

Yes. There is Islamic extremism and inter-tribal conflicts, but these may not affect expats on a day-to-day basis. - Oct 2019

Islamic terrorism. Ethnic strife between tribal groups. - Jul 2019

This seems to be a conservative patriarchal society. - Jul 2019

As for gender equality, women are treated as second class citizens. This is not as much of a problem for Western women as it is for the locals. As a woman, I feel safe walking down the street alone, though there are occasionally vendors who are overly aggressive or overly interested. There is no rule here about women having to be "accompanied" by a man.

The relationship between different ethnic groups and between people of different faiths is generally good and tolerance is high. - Dec 2017

There is a surprising level of religious accord here due to the country's history. We've seen no issues of racism prejudice. - May 2016

People coexist here incredibly well, with little or no tension between religious or ethnic groups. - Aug 2015

There's some misogyny, but nothing overt (at least not among educated folks in Ouaga). In general, people are pretty accepting of racial, religious and ethnic differences. - Jun 2015

There is a true mix of Christian and Muslim societies here that live together as peacefully as I have ever seen. They have each other over for feasts on each others' holidays and have a "the more, the merrier" attitude. It is a very homogeneous society that enjoys that stability. I did see some cross-border issue in regards to the Malians and Tuaregs. The Burkinabe are a little more watchful, not racist, of those local foreigners in the country now as they are eager to keep the Malian issues to a minimum. - Jul 2013

Yes. Caucasians are seen as wealthy and the locals will attempt to take advantage of you because of that. It is the most religiously tolerant culture I've ever experienced. - Jul 2013

Westerners receive a bit of deference, if not extra disturbance from the locals. We are viewed as rich even though we might be anything but. - Apr 2013

With race and religious, no - none at all. Honestly. Actually, Burkinabe make a lot of jokes about ethnicity and race, but it's never mean-spirited. In fact, this is probably the most religiously tolerant country I've ever lived in, including the U.S., and much, much, more tolerant than Europe (where being very religious is often looked down upon). There are definitely gender biases and discrimination, but it is nothing like the Middle East. - Nov 2012

In Ouaga: no. Muslims and Christians live together without any issues. - Aug 2010

This is a male-dominated culture, but most people get along very well regardless of religion or ethnicity. - Jul 2008

The only one you're likely to notice is gender prejudice. This is definitely a male-dominated culture and society, although you see a lot of women in business and government. - Jun 2008

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