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date: 02 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Berber languages are a close-knit language group within Afro-Asiatic. In Berber scientific and political discourse, there is a tendency to play down the differences, and often Berber is represented as one single language with only some superficial regional variation. Berber dialectology is predominantly synchronic. Instead of providing a tree-model of the different varieties, this chapter, by using different approaches, attempts to define a number of different synchronic blocks. In a block-like classification of Berber languages, seven such historically defined entities are established. In view of the continuous movement of convergence one may doubt that the reconstruction of a Proto-Berber entity is possible.

Keywords: Berber, Afro-Asiatic, dialectology, reconstruction, convergence

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