Tamashek is part of the Tuareg language/dialect group, which constitutes Southern Berber. The Berber languages of Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, and northern Algeria, along with a few outliers, are often classified together as Northern Berber. I managed to avoid studying any of the Moroccan Berber languages during my Moroccan days, to my (present) regret. In Mali, however, my work on Songhay and Hassaniya Arabic clearly needed a complement in the form of parallel research on Malian Tamashek. I therefore interrupted my other work to intensively study Tamashek. I produced a large reference grammar, a large dictionary, and a short text collection. The fieldwork was done in Timbuktu, Gao, and (briefly) Menaka. Fortunately, I completed this project before northern Mali disintegrated into conflict.

The dictionary joins the illustrious tradition of Tuareg lexicography initiated by the (martyred) Christian missionary Charles de Foucauld in Algeria, and by the Danish linguist Karl-G. Prasse and collaborators on two major varieties spoken in Niger. The grammar brings out the intricate, multi-layered ablaut system.

      2006            Tamashek (Mali) - English - French dictionary. Paris: Karthala. Pp. 875.
                                    ISBN 2-84586-785-9
      2005b         Tamashek texts from Timbuktu and Kidal. (Berber Linguistics Series.) Cologne: Rüdiger Köppe Verlag. Pp. 170.
                                    ISBN 978-3-89645-392-1
      2005c          A grammar of Tamashek (Tuareg of Mali). Mouton de Gruyter (Mouton Grammar Series). Pp. 745.
                                    ISBN: 978-3-11-090958-6

      2000a          SIFT-ing the evidence: adaptation of a Berber loan for 'send' in Moroccan Arabic. In: S. Chaker & A. Zaborski (eds.), Études berbères et chamito-sémitiques: Mélanges offerts à Karl-G. Prasse, 223-32. Paris/Louvain: Peeters.

      2015            Kossmann, Maarten. A grammatical sketch of Ghadames Berber. Journal of African Languages and Linguistics 37(1):161-163.
      2002            Sudlow, David. The Tamasheq of North-East Burkina Faso: Notes on grammar and syntax including a key vocabulary. Afrika und Uebersee 85(2):315-6.


[last update Nov 2017]

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