The present FSI Hausa Course has been written in an effort to fill the need for a broad grammar book about the language. It is elementary in two senses - it assumes no prior knowledge on the part of the student, and it presents only the broad outlines of the grammar. There is no claim to either originality or completeness.
This course is accompanied by tape recordings but should be used with a speaker of the language, preferably under linguistic supervision. It is nevertheless hoped that the student who has only the tapes may learn the essentials of the language. The recordings include the Basic Sentences and Drills of the units, as well as the Supplementary Conversations which follow the units. Those few drills which are not recorded are so noted and are bracketed.
The plan of the text is that of Basic Sentences - Notes -Drills. Some general hints on the use of this type of material are given here for the benefit of those who may be unfamiliar with the method.
Basic Sentences are dialogs to be memorized. Each item is to be repeated after a speaker of the language for the tape) until the studentts rendition is satisfactory both from the point of view of pronunciation and of fluent delivery. The tapes give each item twice, with space for student imitation (out loud) afterwards. The new words of each sentence are given as build-ups before the sentence, as are some new constructions. While these build-ups are on the tape, they should be omitted after the first several repetitions when drilling with an instructor. The English renderings of the Basic Sentences are meant to be situational equivalents, not literal translations. Parentheses and quotation marks Om') are used when a more literal translation is given in addition to the ordinary English equivalent. Brackets (1 are used to indicate words in the English which must be supplied to make it normal English but have no equivalent in
The topical labels given to the Basic Sentences in the Table of Contents are to help the student in referring back to a given unit. The dialogs, like real speech, often change topics in mid-stream.
The Notes are to be studied outside of class. Since these explain the grammatical features necessary for understanding the text at that point, it is unnecessary to have any grammatical ex-planations given in class. However, should the instructor be trained in the linguistic analysis of Hausa, he may wish to elaborate on the notes or to clarify any aspects of them with which the students may have difficulty. In no case should grammatical explanations be made before that feature has been dealt with in the text.
As mentioned above, the grammar in the notes is skeletal, but it should suffice for the entire course. Further grammatical study should be postponed until the course is completed. The purpose of the text is not merely to present grammatical data but to provide sufficient drill to enable the student to become throughly familiar with a given grammatical feature before passing on to another one. Occasionally alternate forms or constructions are mentioned in the notes but not drilled. These are features which are considered marginal and are added to give the student some feel of the much broader perspective which more advanced study will develop. The Grammatical Drill section of each unit gives exercises which are to furnish the student with considerable practice on the main point of grammar discussed in the unit.
They also review earlier material. While extensive, they are not exhaustive, and may be supplemented when the text is used in a class. Care should be taken not to introduce any new vocabulary or constructions in supplementary drill. Occasional new words are used in the drills of the later units. These, however, are introduced very sparingly. They will help accustom the student to hear new items which he must try to understand by context only. Translations of these are added on the side of the page, even when they are words which will occur later in the units.
Hausa is the Chadic language (a branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family) with the largest number of speakers, spoken as a first language by about 34 million people, and as a second language by about 18 million more, an approximate total of 52 million people.
Hausa is spoken in: Nigeria, Niger
Hausa is also called: Abakwariga, Habe, Haoussa, Hausawa, Haussa, Hawsa, Kado, Mgbakpa