Dance and music are important parts of
cultural life. In the 1960s and 1970s, folk music was
"rediscovered" in countries such as Mali, Senegal and
Guinea. The result was a brand new African pop that has
come to conquer the world since the 1960s with names
like Bembaya Jazz National and Mory Kanté.
Young rap artists like Phaduba Keita and Ablaye
M'baye (aka Scandal) write texts that criticize the
authorities. Among the new stars who have made
international careers are Sia Tolno and Maxi Krezy.
Traditionally, alternating songs with elements of
improvisation and vocal singing are typical of Guinean
music. The country's musical traditions have been
influenced by both Muslim and Western music through the
introduction of Muslim string and wind instruments as
well as Western electronic instruments.
Latest population statistics of Guinea, including religious profiles and major languages spoken as well as population growth rates in next three decades.
Guinea has a rich oral storytelling tradition that
forms the basis of modern literature. The country's most
famous writers are Camara Laye and DT Niane.
Guinea was one of the first countries in sub-Saharan
Africa to start developing a film industry. However,
this development took place during Sékou Touré's hard
dictatorship (see Modern History). Among the top
directors today are Mohamed Camara and Cheick Doukoure
who both operate in France, as well as Mamady Sidibe and
Cheik Fantamady Camara. The latter's film Il va
pleuvoirt sur Conakry (Clouds over Conakry) is about the
contradictions between modernity and tradition in
Songaah: List and lyrics of songs related to the country name of Guinea. Artists and albums are also included.
Formally, freedom of speech prevails and a
new law from 2010 should make it easier to start
newspapers. Over the years, media freedom has been
restricted in various ways, journalists have been
arrested and newspapers have been closed. The situation
improved after the democratically elected government in
2011, but clear limits are still set for what can be
said, including through strict advocacy laws and the
publication of "false information" is also prohibited.
At the same time, it appears that media contributes to
igniting tension in society.
Low wages and poorly educated journalists have
created some ethical problems, including that
journalists receive bribes for not writing about
During the 2010 election campaign, all parties were
given space in the state media. But when riots broke out
around the second round, temporary state of emergency
was introduced (see Current Policy) and several
journalists from private media were arrested. Following
an assassination attempt on President Alpha Condé in
2011, the state media council banned the CNC (Conseil
nationale de communication) from the media to report on
what had happened. The ban was only lifted after
protests both within the country and from other
Also in connection with the 2013 parliamentary
elections, there were threats and harassment of
journalists, in some cases from the country's security
forces or supporters of various parties. Some radio
stations were forced to close, and their employees were
Since then, the authorities have shown a greater
willingness to take action against those who threaten
and harass the media, even though the president has
dismissed criticism from international organizations
promoting freedom of the press. The media council CNC
has also tended to take punitive action against media
that does not support the government.
In 2014, three media workers, along with five health
workers, were killed when they visited a village in
southeastern Guinea to inform how people would protect
themselves against the Ebola virus. The village's fear
of the group they believed was there to spread the
disease is believed to have led to the murder. However,
the military later intervened to prevent a group of
journalists and lawyers from further researching the
In early 2016, a reporter on the internet magazine
Guinee7.com was shot to death by an unknown perpetrator
when he watched the opposition party UFDG's party
congress where riots occurred (see also Political
In 2015, Guinea ended up number 102 out of 180
countries on Reporters Without Borders index of freedom
of the press in the world.
The largest media are state, but since 2006, private
radio and TV channels have been allowed.
There are about thirty newspapers in the country, all
of which have small editions, irregular editions and are
mostly read in Conakry. Single photocopied articles from
different magazines are a cheaper option for those who
cannot afford it. Among the state newspapers are the
government agency Horoya (Freedom) which is the only
daily newspaper in the country, and the Journal Official
de Guinée which is published every two weeks. There are
several private newspapers and magazines: the satirical
Le Lynx, Le Jour and La Nouvell Tribune. High printing
costs create problems for all newspapers.
About twenty online magazines, often based outside
Guinea, have become increasingly important in recent
years for news reporting. GuineeConakry.info belongs to
those who have the greatest impact.
Since literacy is low, it is the radio that reaches
most residents. The state broadcasting company
Radiodiffusion-Télévision Guinéenne (RTG) broadcasts
programs in French and a variety of native languages.
The radio also has broadcasts in English, Portuguese and
Arabic. There are also several private radio stations,
including Espace FM. Private Espace TV, which often
investigates corruption deals in the public sphere, has
not received broadcasting permits in Guinea, but can be
viewed via satellite.
The Guineans also listen to foreign radio stations.
Foreign TV channels are available via satellite or
cable, but few can afford them.
There are no restrictions on the Internet, but
outside the capital few Guineans have access to the
FACTS - MASS MEDIA
Percentage of the population using the
18 percent (2017)
Number of mobile subscriptions per 100