Published August 22, 2020
Zazaki, or Zaza, is an Indo-Iranian language from eastern Turkey. Spoken by up to 2 million people, Zazaki is the ancestral language of the Zazaki people, cultural cousins of the Kurds, and is closely related to the Kurdish language. This video was self-recorded by Cemre Ömer Ayna in Turkey. Southern Zazaki, also known as Zaza, is spoken by the Zaza people of Eastern Turkey. Because many Zazas consider themselves ethnically Kurdish, and the language interacts heavily with the Kurdish language, many people have classified Zazaki as a Kurdish dialect, but it is linguistically closer in relation to Gorani, Gilaki, Talysh, Tati, Mazandarani, and the Semnani language, which are all in the same Western Iranian subdivision of the Indo-Iranian language family. Zazaki was historically written using a variety of the Arabic script, but contemporary media is produced using two iterations of the Latin alphabet. Since restrictions on local languages were reduced in 2003, there have been some Turkish radio broadcasts in the language. Zazaki is unique as one of the two languages in the Indo-Iranian languages that distinguish masculine and feminine gender with nominative declensions, the other being Kurmanji. This video is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International license. To download a copy, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.