Category: Language

“The spoken word, through the vibrations that it sets in motion, activates and propels all things … ” ― Malian Writer and Ethnologist, Amadou Hampâté Bâ

Whether the vibrations are in Yoruba, Igbo, Fula, Akan, Wolof … West Africa reverberates with the sounds of Niger-Congo languages, one of the largest language families in the world.

Garay Alphabet: a Wolof Script

Garay is an alphabet created specifically for Wolof, a language widely spoken in Senegal and parts of the Gambia and Mauritania. Traditionally, Wolof was written with an adapted version of …

The Power of a Name

To the Shakespearean question “What’s in a name?”, West Africa’s answer is “Everything”. In a world where even the act of speaking is infused with power, birth names ― whether …

The Power of Words

The ‘word’ in West African cultures, once loosened from the lips as if drawing back the strings of a talisman pouch, diffuses a special force, the primal energy of creation …