Malian national culture can be best defined as a project that was developed with different emphasis and credibility by the governments that led Mali (formerly French Sudan) in the postindependence period (1960 to the present). Mali History and Culture Information and Travel Guide. Vacation package Book. It is undoubtedly a colonial legacy. As in most post-colonial nations, the territorial and administrative boundaries established by the colonial power, in this case France, remained essentially unchanged long after independence. Westernized Malian politicians and intellectuals reappropriated modern colonial institutions and adapted them to their reinterpretation of local aims and aspirations. For instance, the choice of Mali as the name for this country harking back to one of the great medieval empires that blossomed in this area is representative of a wider attempt by Malian politicians to validate a new political order, the postcolonial state, by claiming its derivation from African political formations already in existence prior to colonization. This reappropriation did not occur in a sociocultural vacuum. Indeed, it was affected by transnational economic and political forces as well as by local popular responses to the policies implemented by local governments.