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Berber Linguistics


Admission requirements

Willingness to read French.


Berber is a group of closely related languages spoken in Northern Africa and the Sahara. In this course, an overview of the basic structures of these languages is provided, and a number of analytically and typologically interesting features will be highlighted. This includes topics such as syllabification, case marking, aspect, and sequentiality.

Course objectives

Course objective 1: Acquiring knowledge of and insight in the general structure of Berber languages and of the internal diversity.

Course objective 2: Acquiring knowledge of and insight in some of the analytically and typologically salient features.

Course objective 3: Acquiring skills of analysis of existing literature on Berber lingusitics.

Course objective 4: Strengthening of oral presentation skills.

Course objective 5: Doing original analysis of Berber linguistic questions and/or data.

Course objective 5: Strengthening of written presentation skills of original analysis.


The timetable will be available by June 1st on the website.

Mode of instruction


Course Load

  • time spent on attending lectures and seminars: 26 hours

  • time for studying thecompulsory literature: 75 hours

  • time for preparing one presentation: 35 hours

  • time for writing a paper based on original research: 144 hours

Assessment Method

  • Oral presentation based on extensive reading of orginal literature 20%

  • Term paper, featuring original analysis based on literature and/or on field research 80%


This course is supported by Blackboard.

Reading list

  • Kossmann, Maarten (2012). Berber. In: Zygmunt Frajzyngier and Erin Shay, eds. The Afroasiatic Languages. Cambridge.: Cambridge University Press, pp. 18-101.

Further literature will be announced during the course.


Students should register through uSis. If you have any questions, please contact the departmental office, tel. 071 5272144 or mail:

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte via:
Registration Contractonderwijs via:


MA Linguistics departmental office, P.N. van Eyckhof 4, room 102C. Tel. 071 5272144;