Ethnic Groups in Morocco: Berber People

Front Cover
General Books LLC, 2010 - 90 pages
Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Pages: 27. Chapters: Berber people, Sahrawi people, Morisco, Gnawa, Haratin, Moroccan people, Riffian people, Tekna, Oulad Tidrarin, Jebala, Shilha people, Doui-Menia, Ait Atta, Mzab Morocco, Masmuda, Regraga, Ait Ouriaghel, Ait Yafelman, Kebdana, Hhaha tribe, Chiadma, Ait Seghrouchen. Excerpt: Berbers (Berber: Imazighen) are the indigenous peoples of North Africa west of the Nile Valley. They are continuously distributed from the Atlantic to the Siwa oasis, in Egypt, and from the Mediterranean to the Niger River. Historically they spoke the Berber language or varieties of it, which together form a branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family. Today, varieties of Maghrebi colloquial Arabic are spoken by a large portion of Berbers besides the Berber language itself. Foreign languages like French are used by the educated in Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria. Spanish is also known by some Berbers in Morocco and in the annexed Western Sahara and Italian in Libya. This presence of European languages was due to European brief occupation or colonization of the Berber world. Today, most Berber-speaking people live in Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Mali and Niger. The presence of the Arabic language and dialects is due to the spread of Islam and to the immigration of some Arab tribes to the region centuries ago. A Berber is not necessarily only someone who happens to speak Berber. The Berber identity is usually wider than language and ethnicity, and ecompasses the entire history and geography of North Africa. Berbers are not a homogenous ethnic group and encompass a range of phenotypes, cultures and ancestries. The one unifying force is the Berber language and an identification with the Berber heritage and history. Many Berbers call themselves some variant of the word Imazighen (singular: Amazigh), possibly meaning "free people" or "free and noble men" (the ...

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