Home

Swahili

Swahili is a language that is widely spoken in East Africa.  It is spoken as a first language in areas along the east coast, i.e. from southern Somalia to the Mozambique-Tanzania border; the islands of Zanzibar, Pembe, Mafia, Lamu, and the Comores; and most of East Africa's urban areas.

Swahili is a Bantu language. Other Bantu languages include Zulu, which is spoken in South Africa; Kikuyu of Kenya; Kongo of Zaire; and Duala of Cameroon. Although Bantu languages are not mutually intelligible, they all derive from a common ancestral language and thereby share vocabulary, word processes, and sentence structure. For example, the word for 'a person' is: Mtu (Swahili), Umuntu (Zulu), Mundu (Kikuyu), Muntu (Kongo), Moto (Duala). Because Swahili is spoken over such a wide area that is both ethnically and linguistically diverse, many local variations have emerged.

Swahili has borrowed a great deal of its vocabulary from Arabic and other languages such as Portuguese, Indian (Persian and Hindi), German, and English. This is resultant of contact with Arab and Indian traders, missionaries, settlers, explorers, and colonialists. Borrowing is now common not only to Swahili, but to other languages, as well. In spite of this extensive borrowing, Swahili still remains a Bantu language in its basic structure and core vocabulary. This attests to the cultural flexibility of Swahili, as it consistently adapts to new situations and circumstances. Swahili's flexibility has contributed to its rise as not only the national/official language of several East African countries, but also to its international reputation.

 

Source: African Studies Center, University of Pennsylvania

Faculty:
Current Course Offerings:

Term A = Spring

Term B = Summer

Term C = Fall


Course Title Term Time
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2012A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2012A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2012A CANCELED
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2012A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2012A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG CULTURE II 2012A CANCELED
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2012C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2012C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2012C TBA TBA-
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2012C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2012C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2012C TBA TBA-
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2013A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2013A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2013A CANCELED
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2013A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2013A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG CULTURE II 2013A CANCELED
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2013C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2013C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2013C TBA TBA-
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2013C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2013C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2013C TBA TBA-
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2014A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2014A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG CULTURE II 2014A TBA TBA-
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2014A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2014A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG CULTURE II 2014A TBA TBA-
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2014C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2014C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2014C TBA TBA-
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2014C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2014C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2014C TBA TBA-
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2015A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2015A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2015A CANCELED
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2015A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2015A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2015A CANCELED
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2015C CANCELED
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2015C CANCELED
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2015C T 0900AM-1030AM
R 0230PM-0400PM
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2015C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2015C CANCELED
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2015C T 0900AM-1030AM
R 0230PM-0400PM
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2016A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2016A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2016A TBA TBA-
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2016A TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2016A TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2016A TBA TBA-
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2016C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2016C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2016C TBA TBA-
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2016C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2016C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2016C TBA TBA-
AFRC 181-680 AFRC181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 282-680 AFRC282 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1030AM-1200PM
AFRC 285-680 AFRC285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2017A TR 0900AM-1030AM
AFST 181-680 AFST181 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 281-680 AFST281 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1030AM-1200PM
AFST 285-680 AFST285 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2017A TR 0900AM-1030AM
AFST 485-680 AFST485 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2017A TBA TBA-
AFST 581-680 AFST581 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 583-680 AFST583 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II 2017A TR 1030AM-1200PM
AFST 586-680 AFST586 - ADVANCED SWAHILI II 2017A TR 0900AM-1030AM
AFST 591-680 AFST591 - SWAHILI LANG/CULTURE II 2017A TBA TBA-
AFRC 180-680 AFRC180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFRC 280-680 AFRC280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFRC 284-680 AFRC284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2017C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 180-680 AFST180 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 280-680 AFST280 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 284-680 AFST284 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2017C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 484-680 AFST484 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2017C TBA TBA-
AFST 580-680 AFST580 - ELEMENTARY SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1200PM-0200PM
AFST 582-680 AFST582 - INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI I 2017C TR 1030AM-1200PM
F 0300PM-0400PM
AFST 584-680 AFST584 - ADVANCED SWAHILI I 2017C TR 0900AM-1030AM
F 0400PM-0500PM
AFST 590-680 AFST590 - SWAHILI LANG & CULTURE I 2017C TBA TBA-