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Yoruba Resources

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Studies: German

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04 May 2020 at 11:57pm | IP Logged 
During the period from February 2020 through May 2020, I conducted a complete revision to the twenty-eight (28) lists of resources which I had posted on the LLORG during the previous three-year period. As revising these types of documents directly on the LLORG in the “Edit Mode” is fraught with difficulties, I removed their contents from the LLORG, stored them on my computer, and completed the revisions. During the revision process an event occurred which prevented me from reposting the contents to their original files and, as a contingency measure, I have posted them here on the HTLAL in the anticipation that either the Administrator or the Moderators of the LLORG will copy/paste them to the LLORG. - Speakeasy


Benin: Languages
The only official language of Benin is French. A total of 55 languages are spoken … Fon (a Gbe language) and Yoruba are the most important in the south of the country. In the north there are half a dozen regionally important languages, including Bariba (once counted as a Gur language) and Fulfulde – Source: Wikipedia

Nigeria: Languages
The official language of Nigeria, English, was chosen to facilitate the cultural and linguistic unity of the country… Although most ethnic groups prefer to communicate in their own languages, English as the official language is widely used for education, business transactions and for official purposes … There are 521 languages that have been spoken in Nigeria; nine of which are now extinct. The major languages spoken in Nigeria represent three major families, such as Igbo, Yoruba and Fulfulde; Kanuri, spoken in the northeast, primarily in Borno and Yobe State, is part of the Nilo-Saharan family; and Hausa is an Afroasiatic language … Hausa is the most widely spoken of the three main languages spoken in Nigeria itself (Igbo, Hausa and Yoruba) but unlike the Yorubas and Igbos, the Hausas tend not to travel far outside Nigeria itself. – Source: Wikipedia

Yoruba Language
Yoruba is a language spoken in West Africa, the number of speakers approaches 30 million. It is a pluricentric language spoken principally in Benin and Nigeria, with communities in Sierra Leone, Liberia, other parts of Africa, the Americas, and Europe. The non-vernacular remains of the language, Lucumi, is the liturgical language of the Santería religion of the Caribbean. Many Yoruba words are used in the Afro-Brazilian religion known as Candomblé. Yoruba is also used in many other Afro-American religions in the Americas and the Caribbean. Yoruba is most closely related to the Itsekiri language (spoken in the Niger Delta) and to Igala (spoken in central Nigeria). – Source: Wikipedia

Yoruba Courses, Supplements, etc.

Beginning Yoruba (1963), 180 pages, by J. Omotoso Aremum, Hans Wolff; Michigan State University
Second-Year Yoruba (1964), 215 pages, by J. Omotoso Aremum, Hans Wolff; Michigan State University
AUDIO recordings - Indiana University CeLT Yoruba Archive
For classroom use. Audio-lingual method. AUDIO recordings freely-available on the Indiana University CeLT Recorded Sound Archives website. Copies of course manuals difficult to find. Michigan State University might have a copy in their archives for consultation and duplication. ERIC listing ED013443 was likely a downloadable PDF copy of the course manual which has since been replaced by a reference to a copy on micro-film.

DLI Yoruba Basic (1960s – 1970s) - NONE

FSI Yoruba Basic (1963), 384 pages, by Earl Stevick et al.
AUDIO recordings - Indiana University CeLT Yoruba Archive
Audio-lingual method. In addition to pattern drills, phrasebook-style sentences and short exchanges included so as to stimulate greater initiative and participation on the part of the student. Approximately 24 hours of AUDIO recordings. Hosted on the Yojik and Live Lingua websites. Audio recordings also available on Indiana University CeLT Recorded Sound Archives website.

FSI Yoruba Intermediate Texts (1967); 270 pages, H. David McClure, John O. Oyewale
AUDIO recordings - Indiana University CeLT Yoruba Archive
Audio-lingual method NOT used. Series of monologues recorded by a native speaker from Oyo area. A special feature is the “overlapping” of the monologues which appear in several variations of each topic. AUDIO recordings constituted central part of course; texts intended as supplementary material. Available on Yojik and Live Lingua websites. Audio recordings also hosted on the Indiana University CeLT website.

Teach Yourself Yoruba (1973, reprinted 1993), 228 pages, by E.C. Rowlands; Teach Yourself Books
AUDIO recordings - Indiana University CeLT Yoruba Archive
Out-of-print. Copies difficult to find. AUDIO recordings hosted on Indiana University CeLT website.

U.S. Peace Corps Yoruba (1965), 364 pages, by A. Oladele Awobuluyi      
For classroom use. ERIC copy presently unavailable (possibly available on microfilm).
Yoruba Readers, Literature, etc. (Legacy)
For reasons of expediency, irrespective of their dates of publication, “legacy” readers and similar materials have been listed in the “contemporary” section of this file.


Yoruba Courses, Supplements, etc.
Beginner's Yoruba (2005, 2018), 282 pages, by Kayode J. Fakinlede; Hippocrene
Beginner's Yoruba: AUDIO Recordings Online - Hippocrene
Beginning Yoruba (Yorùbá Yé Mi) (2011) by Fehintola Mosadomi; University of Texas     
University of Texas offers: “an interactive, communicative, introductory, multi-media program intended to provide college and university students with basic listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills of language learning in Yorùbá.” Free download in PDF and MP3 format. Book can be ordered print-on-demand. For classroom use. Possibly CEFR A2. Could be used as supplemental materials for self-instruction.

Colloquial Yoruba (2015) by Antonia Yetunde et al.; Routledge
Colloquial Yoruba (2015) AUDIO Recordings – Routledge website
Staple CEFR A0-A1. Amazon customer reviews quite positive.


DLI Headstart2 Yoruba - NONE

Glossika Yoruba –NOT YET AVAILABLE
Circa 2018: announcement of prospective expansion of languages. Yoruba materials not yet available.

Introduction to Yoruba: Language, Culture, Literature & Religious Beliefs Part I (2006)
Intermediate Yoruba: Language, Culture, Literature, and Religious Beliefs, Part II (2011)
By Abraham Ajibade Adeleke, published by Trafford Publishing. Introduces spoken Yoruba. Course manuals total 656 pages. Possibly for classroom use. No mention of audio recordings. Likely CEFR A2-B1. No Amazon reviews.

Je K'A So Yorùbá (Let's Speak Yoruba) (1993), 343 page
Jé K`Á Ka Yorùbá, an Intermediate Course (1998), 256 pages
Both by Antonia Yétúndé Folárìn Schleicher; published by Yale University Press. From the editor: “… a functional-notational approach, real-life situations; integrates reading, writing, speaking, listening; combines grammatical structures with multidimensional curriculum." For classroom use. Apparently, NO audio recordings. Probably CEFR B1. Amazon reviews vary considerably.

National Foreign Language Center (NFLC) Yoruba – University of Maryland
Collection of graded exercise sets for supplemental practice (reading, aural, occasionally videos). Similar to DLI GLOSS. Access: US$ 5.00 monthly subscription.

The Yoruba Language Class (set of 3) (2016) by Abimbola Abimbola; Independent publish - eBay
From the editor: “This is an easy way to teach beginners to read, write and understand Yoruba language. This picture books is full of drawings for children to paint as a form of reward as they conquer each module. The Advanced Level books of The Yoruba Language Book 2 and Book 3 have Instructors Manuals attached to them, if followed verbatim, learners will capture the language with ease.” Without further comment.

Yoruba Phrasebooks, Language Guides, etc.
This list is not exhaustive, it is a sample of several phrasebooks and language guides which are available for Yoruba.

Concise Yoruba: A quick introduction to the Modern Yoruba language (2016), 28 pages; by kasahorow; Independently published

DLI Language Survival Kit

Modern Yoruba: A concise introduction to the Yoruba language (2013), 72 pages; by kasahorow; Independently published

Simple Way To Learn Yoruba (2019), 162 pages, by Idowu Obasa; Independently published

Yoruba-English/ English-Yoruba Dictionary & Phrasebook (2019), 240 pages, by Aquilina Mawadza; Hippocrene Books

Yoruba For All: Speak Yoruba Immediately (2020), 53 pages, by Alexandre Breyo; Independently published

Yoruba Grammars, etc.

Essentials of Yoruba Grammar (1982), 176 pages, by Oladele Awobuluyi; Oxford University Press

Grammar of Yoruba (reissue edition 2011), 188 pages, by Ayo Bamgbose; Cambridge University Press

Yoruba Dictionaries, etc.

Dictionary of the Yoruba Language (2002), 476 pages; Nigeria University Press

FAMA'S Ede Awo (Orisa Yoruba Dictionary) (2001), 248 pages, by Aina Adewale-Somadhi; ILÉ Òrúnmìlà Communications

Yoruba-English/English-Yoruba Modern Practical Dictionary (2002), 500 pages, by Kayode Fakinlede; Hippocrene Books   

English / Portuguese / Yoruba Dictionary (2019), 952 pages, by John C. Rigdon; Eastern Digital Resources

Yoruba Readers, Literature, etc.
For reasons of expediency, irrespective of their dates of publication, "legacy" readers and similar materials have been listed in the “contemporary” section of this file.

Bibliographical Survey of Sources for Early Yoruba Language (1985), 380 pages, by Adetowun Ogunsheye; Ibadan University Press

Yoruba Newspaper Reader (undated); Dunwoody Press
Seller’s listing reads: “This reader provides an advanced beginner or intermediate student of Xhosa … intended for self-study … 2 audio CDs included.” Reference to Xhosa might be the result of inattention in a copy/paste listing of their catalogue.

Yoruba Culture, Society, History, etc.

Expository Compilation of Yoruba Proverbs: Volume 1 of 2 (2017), 164 pages
Expository Compilation of Yoruba Proverbs: Volume 2 of 2 (2017), 230 pages
Yoruba Proverbs Handbook (2017), 194 pages
By Ayotunde O. Joshua; Independently published

Handbook of Yoruba Religious Concepts (1994), 144 pages, by Baba Ifa Karade; Weiser Books

History of the Yoruba People (2010), 512 pages, by Stephen Adebanji Akintoye; Amalion Publishing

Yoruba Media


Yoruba Miscellany
Sources of information, resources, et cetera.

Abibitumi Forum - Yoruba and Others   
Bis Bus International: Learn Yoruba
This company was established in 1997 for the promotion and growth of the Yoruba language and culture worldwide.

Indiana University at Bloomington: NALRC (National African Language Resource Center)

OLAC resources in and about the Yoruba language   

University of Texas at Austin: Center for African Studies

University of Wisconsin at Madison: African Studies Program

University of Iowa: Yoruba Language and Culture Resources ALLNet

Please feel at liberty to post your own recommendations and/or comments and I’ll see what I can do about incorporating them into the lists above.

Visitors to this file are encouraged to review the subsequent comments, posted below, as they include members’ suggestions concerning materials and form a running commentary on resources for the study of this language.

Completely revised: April 2020

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