Published December 21, 2018
This video was recorded by Aleesa Man in Mozambique and features Barwe speaker Cristiano Candido. Barwe was spoken by 17,000 people in Mozambique as of 2006. Barwe, also known as Rue or Chibarwe, is a dialect of the Senga-Sena language of the Narrow Bantu group belonging to the Niger-Congo language family and is spoken primarily in the Zambezi valley. Barwe is officially recognized in Zimbabwe. The other dialects of Senga-Sena are Mozambiquean Sena and Malawian Sena which some consider a separate language. Together this language/dialect cluster is composed of 900,000 native Sena speakers in Mozambique (1997), and at least 1.5 million including second language speakers. Classification of the Narrow Bantu languages is sometimes troubled by a potential continuum with related South Bantoid languages, but larger splits are drawn between Bantu languages as they differ from proto-Bantu regarding tone--groupings tend to mirror each other in high and low tones. All Bantu languages, including Barwe and Senga-Sena varieties, make extensive use of affixation.