Falah Academic Center

Creating a brighter future in Afar region.

Afar Language

Until about 50 years ago the Afar language existed only as a spoken language. It had previously not been written or studied. A handful of linguists and, perhaps most notably, a young woman named Enid Parker set out to systematically record the Afar language. It had previously not existed in written form an the Latin alphabet was deemed most appropriate and a preliminary study of the grammar was conducted. Enid Parker published the first Afar language dictionary in 1983. Since then work has continued, but even today it is difficult to find Afar language in print and inconsistencies abound. In Afar region Amharic, the federal language of Ethiopia, dominates. Even the Afar regional government conducts all work in Amharic.It is not unusual to find Afar youths who don’t know their own language since the medium of instruction from the primary level is Amharic and later English. The bottom line is that Afar is an endangered language, at risk of being lost. Falah Academy, among other informal contributors, teaches Afar language at all levels with the aim to preserve this language.


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This entry was posted on May 30, 2012 by .

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