Published January 28, 2018
This video was recorded by Peace Corps Volunteer Nathaniel in Lofa, Liberia, where Zubah lives. Loma is spoken by as many as 420,000 people, primarily in the West African nations of Liberia and Guinea. It is a member of the Mande family of languages, which are spoken throughout Western Africa and include Vai, Mandingo, and Kpelle, among others. Traditionally a solely spoken language, Loma saw the development of a unique syllabary in the first half of the 20th century CE, which has fallen from use; today Loma speakers use a variety of the Latin alphabet in written correspondence. With younger generations continuing to learn and use the language, the future of Loma remains bright. Nonetheless, it is unrecognized by the national governments of both Liberia and Guinea, leaving sparse support for education and the production of native language media.