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Amazigh History, Customary Law and Guide

Law, like Language and custom, distinguishes the Amazigh community in its specificity. Customary law Amazigh is found everywhere in the Maghreb with its constants and its variants. Its specific and distinctive features vary, as does Language, climate, and relief, with exceptions from one tribe to another and from one region to another.

This study is of great interest, such as that of the Language, the arts, and the permanence of the Amazigh civilization. It had to be the French who began their study with monographs from instructional courses given by “intelligence officers,” civilian controllers, or interpreters.

Later was added the mass of arranged studies made by “specialists” in law (sic) or sociology (we are in full colonial extension). It was instrumental in the development of colonial policy. But for some, they hardly shared these illusions because they knew well the Amazigh realities. They had seized every chance of the failure of such a policy, which was then interpreted as a layout reaction.

Besides, all the men in the field and informed researchers hardly believed in the absurd thesis of the “poorly Islamized Amazighs.” To be convinced of this, it was enough to read the History of the Maghreb to see precisely the dominant role played by the Amazighs in the propagation, dissemination, and reform of Islam.

However, the work on “customary Zemmour law” that most authors and practitioners of customary law refer to. This work has been the subject of justified and unjustified contestation and criticism. It was understood, very far from giving us an account of the man and its environment which he proposed, by governing him in code and in the treaty.

The law is more historical than permissible and more authentic than sociological. In short, its seizure is more a matter of social History than of legal sociology.

The customary law is closely linked to ethnography. ‘Thus, the family and more particularly the condition of the real woman and not only the legal one which is little known to us. The rules of marriage and divorce and the rites of private ceremonies are not enough to account for kinship and real dimensions. All the authors copying each other affirm that the Moroccan family is of the type = Arab – “patriarchal” throughout the country. However, some claims not to have met him with the Seksawa. The fact of saying that the preferential alliance is of the Arab type (preferably marrying the paternal cousin) even exists among the urban bourgeois does not change the question quite the contrary.

“Later on after independence, the phenomenon of Amazigh customary law was abandoned in favor of a generative legal dialectic. This approach, no less satisfactory on a theoretical and political level, remains trapped in its presuppositions, not to mention its inductive and somewhat contemplative effects. The reality and History that appear to researchers, as in the eyes of the law “guilty of change and which must nevertheless be admitted. The work of jurists consists of bringing into the right by the QIYAS or the IJNIA. The elements of the custom or prince which do not conform to the letter of the law “. Thus all the social History of sharia can be interpreted as a dialectic between legitimacy and necessity, between great tradition and little tradition. And the power to interpret the law, today as yesterday, remains the essential issue of social struggles”.

Do not look for the Amazigh custom in its sociality or in its historicity in what is mentioned above. It is concealed before being confused with tradition in favor of a law that claims to be immutable, after having noted that in Morocco, like certain Asian countries (at a given moment in their History and development) according to a law of general and inescapable evolution (perhaps): “there exists a close correspondence between modes of production and legal modes (according to the law of correspondence).  The right: modern is used in the modern sectors the latter, dominated by capitalist relations of production. Canon law is customary in economic matters where tribalism subsists and resists”.

Without wanting to be unpleasant or polemical, there emerges a common denominator of all these different trends, which we have so far, namely the unjust appreciation of the custom and the Amazigh customary law. Sometimes they are overestimated, and sometimes they are underestimated according to the cause to be defended and the sinister designs for which they are used. But it is time to reconsider the question in the light of the existing Amazigh realities and the new civilizational necessities promising of our harmonious development.

‘Before returning (or regressing) to the bibliography relating to Amazigh customary law, it is necessary to review certain elements of definitions beforehand.

The law: The law is said to be “it’s!” everyday life. “Before birth, we give rise to rules of law. Some and God knows if that’s the most, consider! That to do justice, it concerns a fact, to refer to such a corresponding article and apply it to what is not enough and sometimes even what can be very dangerous. Because to do justice is above all to integrate a fact of practical life in a legal concept, the law is also “the art of what is: fair and good.” Finally, to do justice is to apply to a fact of everyday life a legal norm. This is roughly the justifying position of colonization by operating in Morocco.

Amazigh Art

It is right and trivial to say that there are laws that are well made, but which remain obsolete as soon as they appear. On the other hand, some uses make the law without being the subject of any text—the reality which colonization cannot ignore. In short, we may not deal with the law, but we cannot forget that the law takes care of you. Because failing to make heard and assert the law and the custom, which does not allow their presence and even less their exercise.

The consequences of this state of affairs still mean that today, and in many cases, specific categories of users ignore their institutions, the machinery, the Language, not to mention attitudes and behaviors. However, they fulfill their obligations, subjecting themselves more to certain customs at the limit of acceptable legal standards and barely making imperfect use of the rights conferred on them.

Contrary to the widely held idea, it is the custom and not the law which adapts with extreme flexibility at times to all the circumstances which intervene to modify the relationships between individuals or between individual and group.

More than necessary, not to neglect these customs not to preserve or freeze them in we do not know what fixism, but rather to better integrate them and their proper place in the evolution of things and the world they can usefully constitute one of the guidelines.

“When the Almohads entered Fez, they put the virtuous Fkih in its place (as a preacher) because of his knowledge of the Amazigh Language. The Almohads who cannot be accused of obstructing the unity of the country. Islam did not name for the “Khotba” (prone) and “the imamate” (direction of prayer) than those who knew the “Tawhid” (proclamation of the unity of God) of Amazigh. The significant disadvantage of this enterprise was not the Islamization of the Amazigh, as we have said. The Amazigh have always said and always say that they are Muslims. There is no need to prove it since this is a matter of their Amazigh city and their very existence, but rather a massive Arabization in disregarding their customs and realities.

This sadly tells us of some of the heated debates that are taking place today. Their effect is like that of a melody that breaks the tranquility and serenity of time. You have to believe that the wheel of History turns on itself.

Customary law is “law not written, but enshrined in use” (Larousse). It is not superfluous to distinguish two words that are brought together here: law and custom. In addition to the considerations mentioned above, the law is what results from customs and which is the force of law.

KANT defines the law by “the conditions necessary for the agreement of wills according to a law of freedoms.” Only this concept opposes the definition of freedom as resulting in the contrary to the relationship of rights. The freedom and the power of the man, which does not harm the right of others, is the best example as well. These are explanatory or justifying theories which we do not wish to discuss here.

While custom is defined as the “rule of law drawing its value from tradition alone (Larousse), it is inherently repetitive and fixist, while the law lends itself better to change. Often the government can only act by law. Sometimes the only custom exists, and sometimes it accepts another legal source emanating from an authority which then remains subordinate to it.

Do we not say of Morocco that the line of demarcation between customary law and the chraâ is located where the presence of the “Cadi” or “Adel” ends? Recalling the Chinese proverb, evoking the situation of legal pluralism where central law is superimposed on local rights: “the law of the prince stops before the custom of the village.”

In such cases, it is natural for solutions to vary: depending on the place and time. Generally, only relationships that fall under private law remain fiercely: and irresistibly under the jurisdiction of local custom and long enough. Nevertheless, power itself is organized and institutionalized, but custom imposes itself on it as a kind of unnamed, informal, and inapparent constitution without it being able to seriously contradict it.


It is generally accepted that countries were governed by sets of customs called “ORF>” or “IZREF. As we have seen, these customs vary from one region to another and from one tribe to another.

It was the “J’MAA” (local assembly), which was responsible for enforcing justice. The litigants appeared before her and received the solution of their dispute there. When one of the two parties was dissatisfied, they then chose another “JMAA” close to their choice before, which

exposes the dispute. There was hardly any second degree strictly speaking (contrary to what the French subsequently instituted through the judicial reforms which damaged and undermined their colonial policy). If the latter’s assessment was consistent with the previous one, the sentenced party then contented itself with executing it.

When his opinion was contrary, we left it to a third “Jumuluk>” whose verdict became decisive.

Sometimes for certain minor disputes, the parties submitted their dispute to an arbitrator chosen by mutual agreement by them. His sentence was then enforceable and was final. Thus were found everywhere in the country of men (arbitrators) Utés very renowned for the knowledge of customs, common sense, and especially their spirit of justice.

Within the tribe was a social organization with sufficient authority to impose its will on its members. Except when it was a question of communities, the law of sentences remained without effect (thus respecting this tacit pact of non-interference, non-aggression, and peace which existed between the different tribes whose merits were praised by assimilating them to small republics). The legal system, we are told, did not include prison or a means of coercion.

Amazigh Legends

Amazigh Culture

The oak speaks, the eagle listens. The voice seems to come out deafeningly from the depths of the earth. From behind the bushes and the very bodies of the trees and rocks. 

In a concentrated agreement within the high clouds of the storm. The whip of lightning and the blows of hail.

This voice imposes silence on the veiled sensations that suck the night from their mist, frogs, and crickets’ lips. In the shadow that stops at the edge on the other side of the senses. Where must the eagle seek the full loss of his weaknesses, or who knows? (The prime strength of his momentum)

The eagle, inaccurate, fluid but picked up, he finds himself facing the rivalry of two forces vying for him and pulling him to the horizon of his sorrows where everything, even shouted, remains unheeded. He listens to himself in this silence and to his wounded memory. Initializing a whole game of return to his past, reinforcing a presence, on the paths of his expectations. He listens to himself, and he listens to his veins, pounding his temples in the manner of the stingy who recount, indefinitely, the only asset of their miseries. His thought goes and comes to the infinity of his wanderings, to the infinity of the blurred plains where any sketch of escape or attempt to escape fades.

He jumps from snippets of frantic dreams to scraps, barely visible, of almost actual realities. He follows a pursuit where the hunted game is choked and sacrificed so that, finally, the roar of the panthers, which seems to excite the filthy joy of the hunters, which bursts forth, above all, as the embers of the eyes of the tigers go out.

Ah! How sad is the withered radiance of the tanned skins of the slain beasts.”… Thinks the eagle, waiting for something to fade as fast as it appears.

A feeling emerges a new feeling, as vain and real as himself in the flash of his memory.

Precisely, in this minute, gleaned like a sunflower seed to sow. A memory in firefly brings back to the surface of its oblivion. The History of an ogress and the color of a hurricane, which seeks to seize the embers of a hearth, almost extinguished to warm its icy udders. Also, the whole legend of the culture with long braids, which, for the attraction of a silky coat, has metamorphosed into a weasel and who has never, ever, been able to resume her forms as a tent girl. But who cries, in his way, his failed wedding night.

“How sad,” he said to himself, struck by another image, the strange image of a brazier where you want to cook your flesh for the meal of a furry Kydre who encourages him, him eagle, to sharpen the razor which must cut his neck.

We Suffocate and fantasies but wonders, rightly, where it all comes from. and who calls his aid? “My other self-lost in the labyrinth of causes killed by my fault? What fault or what sin? He repeats without stopping, to the point of moving away from the moment of forgetting oneself in the feeling of living elsewhere. An elsewhere where his bewitched imagination is integrated, in’imely, into the atmosphere that surrounds him from the outset assimilates him to the attraction of a cosmos of innuendo and lively revivals. He feels floated and, magically, goes away from space. The Consciousness melts with the time, which becomes continuity of his ego that attracts the untamed impulse of self-liberates and marries matter and penetrates the essence.

But one shadow, only one, is diluted and escapes him, his spread out, timeless entity, over his hallucination, in a projection in which a mystery of creation is expressed.

He leaves, so to speak, and approaches fascinated by what seems to be him, the poor bundle of feathers, unconscious, on the rock with the cracked surface. And, looking at him, he throws to the wind this: “whoever gives up the key to his door risks losing his house and, indeed, his reason for being.” with the passage of time and the resumption at Zero of the needles which, not reassembled, stop puncturing the tictac of lives given in pure loss! “

“We cannot seek ourselves, perhaps, where we should not – and, however, by dreaming of being a river, we have become one, from the source to the sea, in the surf of the waves and the gorge of the valleys.”

Life takes on its meaning. But we can see the vanishing of it, wondering why we are so afraid of displeasing in this circus where wooden horses are rushing and turning to knock out the riders! “

“Does the eagle speak and think in the whimsical unreality of a wacky present?” suspended in the void like a ringing bell? “

In the other me, he finds himself of his free and robust ego, Fout ready to assume himself to deserve to be moved for a reflection of purple or a shade of blue.

He thinks, – why? To the color of the maché leaves, to the freckle of broken amber, he continues on a more significant appeal. He emerges in the guise of a slender child in tents who goes to meet beautiful figures of trees.

Hey! Yes, so many things cling to the fate of this boy who returns, charged with reminiscences, to the camp of his family. Like every time, towards the tents, at this hour when the injured grass cries for fear of not being able to make its flower offering to the elf of the rocks of mirages where hides the ray stolen from the moon violated by every stormy evening, when, fleeing, the peaks of mist howl, in full voice, their torment.



I saw

Northern lights

Brighter than dripping noons


Glorious equinoxes

Raise the bowels of the delirious seas


The eyes of the mountains

Frozen in a polychrome nirväna


Blood orchids

Bloom on the heart of the tortured


Glowing walls

Burial The body of the proud.


I saw

Unholy gravediggers

Unearth mutilated memories


Shaggy barbarians

Crush the eyes of a promising baby


Pathetic scarecrows,

Tell the sparrows Their misery in season.


Crazy beggars

Escape from the city of plague-stricken niches


The bird – lyre

Impaled on the mast of a ghost ship.


I saw again

Love violated

Quartered sun The red ramparts


Tears of fire

Digging the faces of very beautiful women


Soldiers come back from hell

The look tracked by Future dementias


Moire nudity, Incarnate pain

Of the one being tortured for The raïson of the masters


The insulted sun, The offended colors

In a world-devouring Cities and dreams.


It was in very old times

When my eyes weren’t blind

Nor my memory of frost.



Amazigh LettersPreliminary remark: This section of the section “Fear that lives the Tamazight” does not give the whole vocabulary relating to the topic; it is very much. It simply aims to make an inventory – necessarily Incomplete – of words whose use is seriously compromised by foreign borrowing.

(4 Abbreviations: MN = Northern Morocco.- MC. = Central Morocco.- MS. = Southern Morocco.- AM .: Ahaggar.- Tim. = Timimoun.- pl. = Plural.- plss = plural without singular. – sspl. = singular without plural.- conj. = conjugation.- int. * intransitive.- tr.dir. = direct transitive.- ind.tr. = indirect transitive.-

The phonetic value of the letters used in the transcription:

1 / Letters without particular sign: value only in French, without Diphthongaison.

2 / Letters affected by a sign: d = d emphatic.- $ = s emphatic.- t = t emphatic.- z = z emphatic.- g = gh.- f = g slightly altered in y.- m = or .- s = ch.- e = e almost mute.

N.B. – The fact that the Tahaggar constantly alters the z in h (izl: ihi; tazart: tahart; zik: hik … etc.) enables us to restore the correct pronunciation of certain words that have apparently disappeared from Moroccan speech.



To find, we said, in psychological behavior and the Amazigh Language, “childhoods” of abstraction! Here we squeeze the fruit, let it give back all the richness of the juice it contains. From the point of departure, which is the concrete Amazigh to the point of arrival, which is the abstract of the West, we are also given back at various stages and in full swing the march from one to the other.

In certain expressions of colloquial Language or certain clichés of oral literature, it would be possible to surprise Amazigh thought and Language, although still harnessed to the concrete, in sketching a movement towards the abstract. The Amazigh reaper, who sees lover passing near the field where he works, calls him in these terms – this is a common cliché in Amazigh poetry, it is used and comes back in a thousand forms -:

Leave your hat, take the apron (the reaper’s leather apron); to go towards you (or: going towards you), we will come out of the great heat”.

We can guess it, and the Amazigh who pronounces these words, and the others who hear them, understand them thus: no doubt it is the heat of the sun on its full noon, but above all, it is the heart, and these are the sounds that are on fire.

Elsewhere, the young man, tormented by his desire, asked his mother for a “cushion” to put down the pain that crushed him.

So, two-way words? No. It’s more complicated. We will give many examples to the moment wanted. There are some of these expressions and clichés where the “psychological” usually confused with the concrete. Becoming one with it begins to emerge in a curious dualism without separating them yet and giving them to each own means of expression. Let’s see the two distinctly in mind, although translated into the same words. Here we find human thought still in the learning and on the point, not to discover, but to begin to practice abstraction. Will we later become aware of this process and use it voluntarily? … We don’t know, but there are tracks to follow.

Let us beware of hasty and superficial comparisons between these Amazigh psychological processes and specific Western processes that seem to be similar illegally. On both sides, it is necessary to put everything back in each respective ethnic group and consequently to judge any sensitive or intellectual or moral behavior among the Amazighs according to what we have said or have to say. Full light can only come out of multiple and diverse examples.


Even when our evolution towards the abstract is not yet complete, the physical mode of feeling things, the physical mode of expressing them, do not play the same way in the Amazigh as in the West. These physical resonances of feeling, the Amazigh soul has its own, and the western soul has its own. Their sensitivity does not both vibrate in the same pitch—another example of a comparison borrowed from everyday things. Amazigh, like sorrow, “eats away at him” (implied for him: like the mill of women grinds the grain); sorrow “dazed him – (implied for the Amazigh: like when you drink wine); grief “consumes”; sorrow “sucks.” He does many other things for the Amazigh that he does not do for us. Or rather what the persistent concerns are haunting and exhausting, the Amazigh feels and characterizes him differently than We have added “implied for the Amazigh. Are we going to appear subtle? Subtle or not, it is true that the words” grind, gnaw, suck, etc … “do not evoke in the Amazigh the memory of the same sensations as with us. So, the feeling being of a different nuance, isn’t the feeling also expressed in a different tone? No, grief does not eat away at the Amazigh; it does not suck it; it doesn’t grind it the same way it gnaws at us and grinds us.

Let us emphasize this point a lot: it is fundamental for the method of interpretation and identification of the psychological. The physical impressions in the Amazigh, by which he reacts to men and things, are not the same as ours. In any case, he speaks as if they were not the same. Without a doubt, the cold is the cold for the Amazigh as for us. He doesn’t feel exactly like we do, or he doesn’t have the same way of saying how he feels it. The cold “is spicy” in our Amazigh mountains, but it is also something else that it is not with us: it is “bitter,” for example. With great thirst, the Amazigh says that she is suffocating her. He smothers him, but she does something else to him that we don’t experience. At least, nothing in our Language shows that we are experiencing it.

How far we are not trained? You have to follow the facts to where they come from. Could it be that the Amazigh way of making contact with the outside world and as much as can be the way of expressing one’s reactions happens to create a physical type different from the Western-type?

The soul also builds its body to its measure and its resemblance.

Everyone knows, for example, that the school is creating a physical type of Moroccan child. Let us compare, for example, the little Amazigh of the douars with the child from the village who goes to school: we get along well, compare them from appearance and physical appearance.


The psychology of Amazigh Language calls for, by transposing them, the same comments that have just been made about Amazigh’s sensitivity, intelligence, and feeling. What is born in the concrete is expressed in the concrete? Amazigh speaking has no abstract words. Some who seem to have only the appearance of it. Although it seems to have emerged from the concrete, they are immersed in it. They have kept all their attachments there and can only play in their way.

The Amazigh, we will often have the opportunity to say that even without abstract words, we are no more embarrassed than us to express his psychological and moral life. But he can only do it with concrete words, borrowed from things of nature and everyday life.

It’s a whole problem of the world to speak Amazigh. We’ll cover it in a special study. Here, at the risk of leaving a disproportion in our developments, we will be satisfied with a few general ideas, always implying that they were the conclusion of analytical work Should we then simply say that the Amazigh speaks by images? It would be a very short view. For him, it is not metaphors or comparisons in the Western sense. It doesn’t behave in mind like metaphors or comparisons. Besides, already speaking of metaphors, comparisons, supposes that one distinguishes the thing compared from that to which one compares it. That one already has the notion of the abstract and the concrete. Among the Amazighs, there is only the special attitude of the man who is close to reality, sees the reality from a particular angle, and expresses it accordingly.

Expression processes? No, these continual references to things of nature and everyday life are more than that. Not knowing the abstract vocabulary, the race has to express psychological and moral things differently. His “philosophy” can only be carried by the concrete vehicle of this colorful Language.

Let’s say it well, and our Western thought has great difficulty in establishing itself on the Amazigh plane. At first, very proud of the baggage of abstract notions and also of abstract words. She does not imagine that the riches of psychological and moral life can be expressed in any other way. In any case, the prejudice subsists in it, tenacious, that abstraction is a superior process and marks a richer intellectuality. So for her, whoever has a lot to say says it this way, or if he says it another way, it is proof that he has to say or only things of inferior quality. The prejudice that makes it difficult to enter the Amazigh soul with all the sympathy and all the freedom of spirit that would deliver it like the secret life.


Then, lack of habit. All this concrete material, all this continual outpouring of verbal poetry, there is a real danger that the Western investigator will interpret it according to the mechanism of his thought.

He sees comparisons there; these comparisons appear to him as ornaments. He waits for the rest, which goes directly to express things. And the rest do not come. The concrete was not a simple comparison; it was to the letter, the very elements of reasoning. Not having the abstract at his disposal, had straddled the concrete. Besides, we call poetry, which is simply the usual way of speaking in everyday life.

To understand all this Language in the same way as the Amazigh understands it. In all this concrete, at first, a sight to smell the psychological datum, to detect it, to extract it directly without wanting to force through the intermediary of the abstract: • this is not an easy thing for our Western minds. You have to get there. We are also rewarded for his pain. We have grasped the mental processes of a race, we have laid bare the internal functioning of its intellectual and sentimental processes; it’s here. It seems to us, we repeat, that the most intimate and the truest of ethnic individuality lies. This finding represents well the supreme effort and the ultimate desire for ethnographic research.

We cannot question the Amazighs, about their way of thinking: the process is unconscious for them. They do not have developed ex-professo theories on abstraction and generalization, and none of them has written so-called philosophical books on the criticism of knowledge and universals. All this Amazigh mental mechanics, it is only to make it work in front of you, to observe it minutely at rest and in working order, to surprise its secrets one by one: sort of experiment.

We always come back to the same point: only an abundant and varied accumulation of facts can make this possible. This accumulation of facts, this documentation, is nothing else, and it cannot be anything other than the familiar speaking data. Nowhere better than there, let yourself be seized in full deflowering the game of Amazigh Thought and Language. The curious researcher cannot at ease find under his hand and spread out before his eyes after he has dismantled them, the cogs of this Amazigh psychological mechanism.


We are sorry to have insisted on these developments. There are so many naively false ideas about the expression resources of the Amazigh Language. Let the matter be settled once and for all. The Amazighs have given themselves the means of expression to translate the complications of things of the soul. But they do it in their way, which is not ours: the whole thing is to understand them.

The Language made only of concrete words: what does that prove against it? The Amazighs also have intelligence and a heart. Their wisdom, we were going to say their “philosophy,” is an undeniable value of the soul. There is an Amazigh humanism, let us repeat it because it is very true the Amazigh wisdom, sensitivity with their concrete Language. How to express their psychological and moral riches as we express ours with our abstract Language.

We come to a conclusion, which is also a natural transition to the next chapter.

Is it enough to say that in front of the same universe as us, the Amazigh attitude is a living experience different from ours? In reality, is it the same universe? On the one hand, a world is divided into distinct patterns, on the other a world which is a mixture of images and forms colors. And therefore, two worlds, one of which is expressed in abstract and dead concepts, and the other in living figures and symbols.

These are the positions of contemporary psychology that we reach by rehabilitating the myth, of which he finds all the rich human substance. The dream of possible renewal “of a new humanism extended to the borders of humanity in time and space, rejuvenated to the sources of wonder by a richer spirit and better adapted to the rhythms of the universe.”

Hope is not chimerical, which can be realized by the confrontation of the spontaneous ontology of the primitive and their mutual enrichment.


The concrete material with which the Amazigh thinks feels, expresses things of the soul is not the same as ours. The Amazigh has his way of seeing and feeling the stuff of everyday life – his way also of taking an attitude towards each other.

In “the multiple “splendors of Han Suyin. A beautiful book published recently by Stock ‘, the Englishman said to his Eurasian lover: “You have an entry for so and so many universes when we find ourselves limited to only one.”

Perhaps, frankly, he has as many universes as races and also as individuals. Is the world of Einstein and Louis De Broglie the same as that of not only a Boscheman but just a farmer or a local worker?

It is not enough, in reality, to say that the Amazigh does not have the same way as the Westerner of thinking and feeling either the physical universe or the psychological and moral universe. This makes no sense if we do not mean that his universe is different from ours, as elsewhere, but in another way, the Chinese universe of Han Suyin.

We resist – it is necessary – to the itch and the coquetry of a digression where, by the comparison with 1 “intellectualized” universe of the Occident, we would seize in full operation the process of Chinese and Amazigh to give us d ‘all at once, without an intermediary, the whole of living reality. Unexpected rapprochement, we feel it well, that of the civilized extreme and the primitive: here too, the extremes meet and touch.

The Western world view is “thought”; the Chinese and Amazigh vision is “lived.” But the spontaneous ontology in which the Amazigh, simultaneously living all of reality, falls short of science! Chinese induction has crossed science and surpassed it. There are the riches and the Sciences of thought and also the riches, and the deficiencies of the “lived.” The new humanism that contemporary psychology promises us seems to want to generate an effort of integration in which, coming from both sides, would reinforce the positive and correct the negative. It is in any case in this direction that the research is directed. Meeting the Chinese with the West, and vice versa is not our business. But the Amazigh at the Amazigh school, maybe we have something to say above.


Trying to open entry into the Amazigh Universe, or rather to penetrate further by studying concrete Amazigh sought in everyday speech.

In the Amazigh, we have said, the psychological is not in an isolated state, in a pure state. He exists only engaged in the concrete not only to express himself but also to be. The things of the psychological and moral life are only thought, felt, and translated only through the things of nature and the external life of each day.

It is the concrete that gives us the psychological: it must be extracted, the first difficulty. Now this “psychological” is very different from ours, we will see. We seek in the concrete Amazigh something that we cannot recognize since this given has nothing in common with what we carry in ourselves: no difficulty. On the other hand, this concrete somehow resembles the concrete that our mind is used to handling. So the interpreter on whom we counted speaks to us, too, a language that we do not understand.

A real cascade of difficulties. Whatever. Or rather so much the better. In pursuit of the Amazigh soul, which escapes him whenever he goes to get his hands on it, the ethnographer never lets himself be disappointed. He takes a liking to the game, sets off again, always ahead, knowing full well that the secret of souls – ethnic souls and individual souls is too great to deserve to be bought hard.

The sources of concrete Amazigh Language: how an Amazigh tribe sees and feels the things of everyday life – such questions, we think, later, to study them methodically with an abundance of texts borrowed from the familiar Amazigh Language.

The first clearing works – not the least ungrateful, but necessary works – to tackle in a somewhat scientific way the broader question of the Amazigh “way of speaking.” For the moment we will stick here to generalities. These generalities, we repeat, are not a priori: in the order of time, these were in reality conclusions. From these general points, clear guidelines will also emerge for the psychological interpretation of Amazigh colloquial Language.

The Amazigh has his way of seeing and feeling the things of nature, his way of seeing and feeling the things of everyday life; this fact carries far. To detect the Amazigh psychological, to identify ts ethnic tone, ethnicity, and nuance, we need to know how the Amazigh goes to nature, how it goes to the ups and downs of its everyday life, and lets them or brings them to you.

We will try elsewhere to extract from familiar speech, which is not formulated there systematically but involved and enveloped. The general conception that the Amazigh nature, impressions, the overall attitude that it adopts â his regard – and also to find the detail of his particular conceptions and his ways of reacting and evolving in the various compartments of things of nature.





Tamazight does not yet constitute a language endowed with a homogeneity so that the comprehension is perfect between the speakers of the different languages. It is one of them most anchored in the shallows of History enjoying its own phonological, morphological and syntactic system.

‘Before going over the different criteria on which we will base ourselves to confirm the non-dialectal character of Tamazight, it is necessary to give a succinct definition of the concepts:” Language, “+ dialect,” and “dialect.”

In its most general sense, the word “language” means a system of expression and communication common to a social group. “The dialect is “a relatively distinct, regional form of a language.”

Patois is a “local language used by a generally small population, often rural and whose culture, the level of civilization are lower than those of the surrounding environment.”

Quan: there are four criteria listed above:

  1. Standardization: see if the phenomenon considered is written or not.
  2. Autonomy: see if the phenomenon considered is independent.
  3. Historicity: see if the phenomenon considered is sufficiently rooted in History.
  4. Vitality: see if it is a linguistic production capable of manifesting an intense dynamism and energy.

The application of these criteria to Tamazight clearly shows that it is a language in its own right. How? ‘Or’ What:

Insofar as it fully meets the four criteria listed above:

Standardization: Tamazight is no longer deprived of a graphic system (which prevented it until today from becoming a language of culture) in the sense that the Tifinagh script; will allow it (it is certain) to stop being only a vernacular. It will become a language used for scientific needs for much wider communication, given the numerical importance of the speakers.

Autonomy: It is this criterion which clearly shows that Tamazight is not a dialect. It enjoys an autonomy, which means that it cannot – under any pretext – be considered a simple regional variety of the dominant Language, as is the case of the Moroccan Arabic dialect compared to modern Arabic. This to the extent that the difference between Tamazight and Arabic affects both the aspects, phonological, morpho-syntactic, and lexical, that is to say, that these are two distinct linguistic systems.

Historicity: It has become commonplace to assert the History of Tamazight that can be said on this subject is that the use of Tamazight was attested among the ancient Libyans (those who, in the 11th millennium BC, died in the Pharaohs). We also know that “the Tamazight script, the Tifinagh, already existed six centuries before the Greek alphabet.

Vitality: The vitality of the Tamazight language is not to be doubted. The writings have been started in this area, are a real challenge, as the awakening of the Imazigns in recent times to reassess their cultural and symptomatic heritage.


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