Article

Berbers

Omar Chaoura Bourouh

in Islamic Studies

ISBN: 9780195390155
Published online April 2013 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195390155-0068
Berbers

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Berbers or Imazighen are the indigenous inhabitants of North Africa. While there is no consensus among scholars about their origins before they settled there over five thousand years ago, historians and anthropologists seem to agree that the still-existing Berber groups in various regions, mainly in North Africa and the Sahara, characterized by distinct dialects and cultural practices, belong to the same ancestry: Imazighen or “the free men.” Centuries of foreign invasions, Islamic conquests and expansion, and modern European colonialism had resulted in the mixing of Berbers with foreign populations and influencing and even suppressing their language and culture. During the postcolonial period, however, various Berber groups have been promoting the revival of their language and culture, at times resulting in conflicts and confrontations with the regimes in their countries.

Article.  5443 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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