The site
This site I created with the help of people who had already experience in making websites.
Kees Schotten provided some valuable tips for lay out and web sites that provide tools for making websites. Javascripts from Henk Mengerink website were used to make the photo session and popups. The basic principle of the menus used at the start pages comes from Thomas Brattli. The video player software comes from Longtail.

A first design and set up of an interactive test book for this Zarma language course is made by my son Menno Fraters. He intents to developed this to get different and attractive forms of exercises.

Most of the photo's published on this site were taken by my wife Marianne Dortants and myself in the 1983-1986 period, when we worked in Niger. Some were taken by my mother, To Schoor, when she and my father visited us in 1985.

Sound recordings of a native Zarma speaker in Lesson 11 are provided by Twee Vandaag
(Channel 2 Today). The video of the 30th final of the national traditional wrestling games comes from Bonferey.TV  and was broadcasted on 10 March 2009.

As far as pictures of animations are used made be others a reference is given and link to the original website is provided. Pictures without references are derived from three CD-ROMs sold by Bart Smit. If one of your pictures is used and you want it to be removed from this website, please, let me know.


The course

The loose-leaf volume "Practical method for the study of the Zarma language", a very extensive work presented by Evangelical Baptist Mission of Niamey from 1970, forms the base of this course.

In addition to the above mentioned work a loose-leaf volume of a "French - Zarma" course provided valuable information; no author or year or publisher is given in the student volume, there is reference to a teacher volume and a "special lessons volume", but I do not posses these.

An overview of literature used to improve the Zarma course is given below. However, first, I would like to thank Sandra Bornand for providing one of her books and some of her scientific articles and Alhaji Somaco Pastor for his willingness to correspond in Zarma, checking texts, and providing some of the material I have published on this website.


Literature older than 1995

  • Ducroz, Jean-Marie, and Charles, Marie-Claire (1982) L'homme Songhay tel qu'il se dit chez les Kaado du Niger.
  • Ducroz, Jean-Marie, and Charles, Marie-Claire (1978) Lexique Soney (Songhay) Français. Parler Kaado du Gouroul. L'Harmatan, Paris, France.
  • Olivier de Sardan, Jean-Pierre (1984) Les sociétés Songhay-Zarma (Niger - Mali). Chefs, guerriers, esclaves, paysans... Éditions Karthala, Paris, France.
  • Surugue, Bernard (1972) Contribution a l'étude de la musique sacrée Zarma-Songhay (République du Niger). Études Nigériennes no. 30. Centre Nigérien de Recherches en Sciences Humaines, Niamey, Niger.
  • Tersis, Nicole (1982) Le Zarma (République du Niger); Étude du parler Djerma de Dosso. Publié avec le concours du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. SELAF, Paris, France.
  • Tersis, Nicole  (1981) Économie d'un système. Unités et relations syntaxiques en Zarma (Niger). Publié avec le concours du Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique et de l'Agence de Coopération Culturelle et Technique. SELAF, Paris, France.


Literature from 1995 and later

  • Bornand, Sandra (2006) Parlons Zarma. Une Langue du Niger. A book about Zarma language and culture.
  • Bornand, Sandra (2005) Le discours du griot généalogiste chez les Zarma du Niger. A study about storytellers in the Zarma-Songhay region. 
  • Harrison, Byron, Harrison, Annette, Rueck, Micheal J. (1997)  Southern Songhay Speech Varieties In Niger. A Sociolinguistic Survey of the Zarma, Songhay, Kurtey, Wogo, and Dendi Peoples of Niger. SIL International. A study on southern Songhay speech varieties in Niger (download pdf).
  • Heath, Jeffrey (1998) Three dictionaries ragarding different Songhay dialects published in the series 'Langues d'Afrique' by l'Harmattan:
    • Heath, J. (1998a) Dictionnaire Songay - Anglais - Français. Tome I Koyra chiini
    • Heath, J. (1998b) Dictionnaire Songay - Anglais - Français. Tome II Djenné chiini
    • Heath, J. (1998c) Dictionnaire Songay - Anglais - Français. Tome III Koroboro senni
  • Parker, Philip M. (editor; 2008) Webster's Zarma - English thesaurus dictionary. Publish by ICON Group International.
  • Rueck, Michael J., and Christiansen, Niels (2001) Northern Songhay Languages in Mali and Niger. A Sociolinguistic Survey. SIL International. A study on northern Songhay languages in Mali and Niger (download pdf).
  • SIL Niger publications (2001-2003). Series of booklets in Zarma language for educational purposes, with French translation of texts.


Internet sources

Last updated: 21 mei 2012