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Whether extended or nuclear, families have distinct lifestyles and beliefs (e.g.

Peulh, Maures, Bamanan, Muslim, Christian, Animist). It takes time to understand the relationships and to be able to distinguish one from the other.

On the other hand, the Malian tradition/custom of "musalaha" (leaving things alone until the situation calms down) or even not being sure of the real motives of a person-who they do not know- may cause Malians to not reply with a straightforward answer.

In the workplace, it is common practise to shake hands although there are a few exceptions.

Humour may rely on a shared culture and given the hierarchical Malian society, it is best to know the person before acting informally.

The type of humour will depend on whether the person is older or younger, a man or woman, an employer or employee, a superior or junior colleague.

Eye contact is fleeting because having or keeping a direct gaze, particularly with your parents, older people, or your employer, suggests that you are not well brought up or are even hostile or defiant toward authority.Malians also communicate with a number of expressions and sounds that indicate agreement or disagreement.Therefore, be careful to not give out ambiguous signals; a calm voice and direct approach are acceptable even if it does not satisfy the person you are speaking to; he/she will express his/her appreciation of your behaviour to others.The appropriate age to get married depends on whether you live in a rural or urban area.Staying single is not well viewed since people tend to think that it is immoral or even sacrilegious.

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