Zaouli is a traditional dance of the Guro people (who speak the Guro language) of central Ivory Coast.
The Zaouli mask, used in the dance, was created in the 1950s, reportedly inspired by a girl named "Djela Lou Zaouli" (meaning "Zaouli, daughter of Djela").
However, stories on the origins of the mask are varied, and each mask can have its own symbolic history.
Each Guro village has a local Zaouli dancer (always male), performing during funerals and celebrations.
The dance is believed to increase the productivity of a village that it is performed in, and is seen as tool of unity for the Guro community, and by extension the whole country.