Shehu 1 year ago
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The Philosophy Behind Hausa Language As A Course Of Study In Universities

This is an article which l wrote specipically in order to clear the wrong perception of some people on students of Hausa language in Africa and the world entirely.

Many people, including Hausas, think so poorly of Hausa as a course. They do this for various reasons; one is the flawed thinking that Hausa is simply the ability to speak the language. Some Hausas even go as far as regarding it as the simplest course amongst the others, being it their mother tongue; some even wonder what their future would look like if they studied Hausa. So they focus on science courses which, according to them, have higher job opportunities than language courses.

People don't know that Hausa is a language unlike any other. There are so many universities in European countries that offer Hausa as a course of study because they, unlike Africans, ironically value the beauty and richness of the language, giving it the deserved credence. I wonder why it is a reverse story in Africa, even among Hausas.

Hausa is arguably among the hardest courses in the university. You see my point when you consider the very low percentage of graduates of Hausa with a first-class. That you are Hausa doesn't mean you know everything about it. Ask students about the language, and you will be shocked to find out how very ignorant you are. Being a student of the Hausa language avails you the opportunity to know the structure, language, and literature of Hausa and her people, as well as their aspect of cultural activities.

Hausa as a course of study is categorically divided into three main parts. These parts are usually studied more critically at the post-graduate level, but here are the basics of these parts:

1. Culture: In this part, all the cultural activities of Hausa peoples will critically be discussed. Cultural rites encompass naming ceremonies, marriage ceremony, burial arrangements, Qur'anic graduation ceremonies, and so on. All these and much more will be fully examined.

2. Literature: This category is further divided into written and oral literature. Written literature comprises novels, drama, and poetry. At the same time, oral literature consists of proverbs, tales, riddles, and the like. Students of the language are exposed to these two branches of literature, and they learn about the changes in the forms over time.

3. Language: Here, there is a shift in focus to the grammar of the language. This part comprises the study of phonetics and phonology, morphology, syntax, and semantics of Hausa.

As a student of Hausa, you also get to learn the basic history of Hausa peoples, their language, occupations, and their old Ajami forms of writing, which, unfortunately, many do not know or talk about notwithstanding its existence in Africa before the advent of English language. A graduate of the Hausa language also has a lot of job opportunities; they could work in media stations like radio stations, television stations, newspaper companies, and magazines. They could also be teachers, lecturers, administrators, diplomats, translators, e.t.c.

To cap it, l want you to know that being a student of the Hausa language grants you the ability to use standard Hausa in both writing and speaking forms; know which language style is formal or informal; detect the origin of any Hausa dialect and spot their differences thus making you an overall better speaker of the language than the average speaker.__________________________

Shehu Muhammed Shehu is a 300-level student of Hausa language, department of Nigerian Languages, Usmanu Danfodoyo University Sokoto.

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