±0 life

~nunca choveu que num estiara~

Bamum or Bafanji?

Okay, it's a fact that Bamum is super cool, has a cool writing system and nice songs by Claude Ndam, but there are no dictionaries available and the Bible translation isn't available online either. However, there's a very small lexicon included on "Parlons Bamoun", a grammar and a nice phrasebook with audio.

On the other hand, for the related Bafanji, despite having 0 resources, I was able to find a potential tutor on Preply, an under development dictionary and the Gospel of Luke online. Of course, Bafanji has never been a written language, so it doesn't have a cool writing system as Bamum does.

I'm way better served with Bamum, but I might have trouble to continue learning it in the future and be forever dependent on a teacher. For Bafanji, I'd depend more on the teacher at the beginning, but having a dictionary, I can still decipher texts on my own and look up the vocabulary I don't know to make new sentences, but of course, I might never get to this point. Which one to choose?

Not dropping Kusaal anymore?

Two days ago I said I was going to switch from Kusaal to Mampruni, but guess what, I've found an improved edition of the Agole dictionary at the author's website and the revised edition of the Agole Bible in a website from Burkina Faso. Now that's a bit of a game changer. There are indeed no children's books as the ones available in both Mampruni and Dagbani, but since they're pretty short, I can always get my tutor to translate the same texts. I'm gonna play with the dictionary a little bit (more precisely, try to look up the words I already know and get them written in the revised orthography) before making a final decision.


After a while taking a break from Cameroonian tutors on Preply, I -apparently- found someone who seem to be proficient in a local language. He speaks Bamum (or "Bamoun" in French), which is also a Eastern Grassfield language just like the ones in the Bamileke group I was interested in before. The coolest thing is that the language had a very interesting writing system which is unfortunately no longer in use, but there are some people trying to revive. I need to dust off my French, since that's the language we're using in our lessons...


So yeah, I'm really dropping Agole Kusaal. The main reason is the lack of resources. The only reading resource I have is the Bible, and though there's an updated version with the latest orthography, only the old one is available online. There's an Agole dictionary in production, but it's still in the draft stage and it should take some years for it to become usable (at least for me to try to decipher texts using it). There's a very basic textbook, but it's a little bit dated and only covers the initial contacts with the language helper. This makes me completely dependent on a teacher to learn the language. To add insult to injury, I've been quite annoyed with the fact that my tutor is always late for every single lesson of ours, from the very first one. His fee is very low, so I'm not in a position to complain, but considering all factors involved, I guess Kusaal wasn't the best choice.

So what are my possible choices? I've been checking what Atlantic-Congo languages have resources such as 1) textbooks or audio lessons, 2) dictionaries, 3) grammars and 4) reading materials available. The obvious choices that meet all these criteria would be Yoruba, Igbo, Ewe, Asante Twi, Fula and Wolof, but all these languages are spoken by many millions, so I'd try others first. Possible related languages could be a) Mooré, but there are no written resources for it other than the Bible; b) Dagbani, but for (1) there are only very basic lessons and the most complete textbook I could find is no longer available from ERIC; and c) Mampruli, but there are only one sketch grammar no longer available online (3) and there are only a few audio lessons (1). So by now I'm planning to switch from Kusaal to Mampruli, but if it doesn't work, then I'll probably switch to Dagbani instead.

Ascoltare il toscano

Dopo avere chiesto suggerimenti su Youtuber toscani su Quora e non ottenere nessuna risposta utile, l'altro giorno avevo già caduto su Leonardo Pieraccioni, un attore fiorentino che almeno nelle sue interviste sempre parla in vernacolo. Poi ieri, tornando a casa dal lavoro, trovo a caso sul Spotify il programma di un YouTuber che si chiama "WikiPedro" e me piace moltissimo il suo accento. Fa un attimo, partendo da questi due come parole chiave, sono caduto su questo eccellente post su redit. Problema risolto: ora ho già abbastanza contenuto da ascoltare in toscano!

Professional overthinker

Everything went just fine at work. Not as good as it could have been, but oh well, bear with my lack of experience :)