The Dinka people are a Nilotic group who are found in Africa mainly in the country of South Sudan. They are also referred to as the Jieng people and just as all Nilotic groups are, they also speak a Nilotic language. Millions of the Dinka people are found only in South Sudan, with their population totaling approximately 4 million people. They are also believed to be one of the largest ethnic groups in South Sudan. They are the largest tribe and live across the Nile regions and are mainly pastoralists.
The Dinka are some of the tallest known people in the world, many consider them the tallest people in the whole world though studies are yet to prove or disprove this.
The Dinka People have a height of 5ft 11.9in (180.7 cm). This is one of the main characteristics that makes them known in many parts of the world to the point of some people referring to them as giants of the land they inhabit. From several studies conducted by scholars across the continent, reports show that the Dinka are the tallest remaining tribes that are still in existence in Africa.
Several reports show that the Dinka migrated from Gezira, which is present-day Sudan. They were earlier hunters and gatherers but later shifted and became pastoralists, practicing pastoralism as their main economic activity. Their main religion since their origin is Christianity, which was a result of their conversion into Christians by the early missionaries. This conversion gave them a strong faith in Christianity and hence they continued to spread the religion over other parts even after the early Christian missionaries left.
Why Are The Dinka People So Tall?
Many myths and misconceptions exist about the cause of the tall height of the Dinka people. As mentioned earlier, the approximate height of the Dinka people is almost 6 feet tall and they are believed to be the tallest people in the world. Their physical appearance makes many tourists that visit them get fascinated because they are generally interesting and hospitable to many people. Many people end up referring to the Dinka people as a tribe of basketball due to their tall height.
The main cause of the tall height of the Dinka people is genetics which has been achieved after several kinds of research conducted by scientists and scholars. However, there exist other beliefs about the cause of the tall nature of these people. Other people believe that the kind of diet that these people take also contributes to their tall height, which is an organic type of food and milk. The main reason for genetics as the outstanding cause of the tallness in the Dinka people is because this kind of trait is passed from a parent to their offspring and the same continues on and on for all coming generations.
What Is The Dinka Diet?
Almost every tribe across Africa has a special diet that is not common in all the other tribes or communities. Several African tribes in Africa have invented types of foods that have lately been a major tourist attraction and also that have come to be adopted by many hotels as part of their menu. Some of the most incredible and famous foods in Africa include Nyama choma and Ugali in Kenya, Jollof rice and Egusi soup in Nigeria, Injera in Ethiopia, Foufou or fufu in West Africa, and Pilau in East Africa.
The main items of the Dinka diet are milk and organic food types such as sorghum and meat. Meat and milk are the most common in the Dinka people because most of the African cattle-keeping tribes consume meat and milk from the cattle that they herd in large quantities. The Dinka are highly pastoralists in nature and therefore the supply of meat for them is not a challenge. Other foods consumed by the Dinka include sorghum, fish, fruits, vegetables, rice, and beans. If the above items are adequately and sufficiently available then they offer all the essential needed nutrients in the human body and hence reduce cases of malnutrition.
Famous Dinka People
Ever since their existence, the Dinka people have had a decentralized form of government which is composed of several clans. Each clan is ruled by chiefs, whose main roles are to bring law and order to the community and also to take control and preside over some religious functions. There are several famous Dinka people that the tribe cherishes for their acts. These include Alek Wek, Luol Deng, Wenyen Gabriel, Manut Bol, and Adut Bulgak. The community recognizes them for their great wisdom, especially the way that they ruled the community since its origin.
This is a famous South Sudanese model that was born in South Sudan and is mainly from the Dinka tribe, where she later on fled away from her country to Britain due to the civil wars that were in progress during the late 90s. Alek Wek is known for having a strong passion for fashion and beauty. This has made her known across many parts of the world, hence also increasing the social awareness of the Dinka tribe.
Luol Deng is a famous basketball player from the Dinka tribe. He was born in present-day South Sudan then moved to the UK where he settled to play for the Great Britain national basketball team and later on became famous for his basketball skills. He, later on, was signed under a famous basketball team, the Lakers where he played for a certain period before changing his team to the Minnesota basketball team.
Wenyen Gabriel is also another famous basketball player from the Dinka tribe who played for the Lakers of the National Basketball Association and ended up becoming a famous player. He is also a South Sudanese and has been playing for the Lakers for a long period.
Just like Luo Deng and Wenyen Gabriel, Manut Bol is also a famous professional basketball player. Besides this, he is also known to be a political activist. During his basketball career, he was crowned as one of the best in shot-blocking. He has continued to be a fighter for human rights for a long time.
Known for her professional basketball skills, Adut Bulgak is a retired basketball player from the Dinka tribe of Sudan. During her basketball career, she earned herself several rewards for being one of the best women in basketball.