Akan

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A language of Ghana

Autonym
Akan
Population

9,100,000 in Ghana, all users. L1 users: 8,100,000 (2013 UNSD). Population includes 111,000 Agona, 85,900 Ahafo, 626,000 Akuapem, 3,820,000 Asante, 142,000 Asen, 124,000 Dankyira, 2,730,000 Fante, 443,000 Kwawu, and 15,400 other (2013 UNSD). L2 users: 1,000,000. Total users in all countries: 9,214,000 (as L1: 8,214,000; as L2: 1,000,000).

Location

Widespread.

Language Maps
Language Status

3 (Wider communication). De facto national working language.

Dialects

Agona, Anomabo Fanti, Abura Fanti, Akuapem (Akuapim, Akwapem Twi, Akwapi, Twi), Akyem (Akyem Bosome), Asante (Achanti, Asanti, Ashante Twi), Asen, Dankyira, Fante (Fanti, Mfantse), Kwawu (Kwahu), Gomua, Ahafo.

Typology

SVO; postpositions; noun head initial; verb affixes mark person, number, object; tense; causatives; 21 consonant and 10 vowel phonemes; tonal (3 phonemic tones); vowel harmony (ATR).

Language Use

A few also use Adamorobe Sign Language [ads] (Nyst 2007). Also use English [eng]. Used as L2 by Abron [abr], Adamorobe Sign Language [ads], Adele [ade], Ahanta [aha], Animere [anf], Anyin [any], Awutu [afu], Chala [cll], Cherepon [cpn], Chumburung [ncu], Deg [mzw], Delo [ntr], Dwang [nnu], Gikyode [acd], Gua [gwx], Konkomba [xon], Kplang [kph], Krache [kye], Larteh [lar], Lelemi [lef], Ligbi [lig], Nafaanra [nfr], Nchumbulu [nlu], Nkami [nkq], Nkonya [nko], Nzema [nzi], Sehwi [sfw], Sekpele [lip], Tumulung Sisaala [sil], Wasa [wss].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 30%–60%. Literacy rate in L2: 5%–10%. Taught in primary and secondary schools. Literature. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible: 1871–1964.
Writing

Latin script [Latn], used since 1978.

Other Comments

The two main subdivisions of Akan are assigned codes in the ISO 639-3 standard: Fanti (fat) and Twi (twi). Fanti dialects: Agona, Anomabo Fanti, Abura Fanti, Gomua. Twi dialects: Ahafo, Akuapem, Akyem, Asante, Asen, Dankyira, Kwawu.

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