A language of Burkina Faso

Alternate Names
Kasena, Kasim, Kassem, Kassena

120,000 in Burkina Faso (1998 SIL). Population total all countries: 250,000.


Nahouri province: Po, Guiaro, and Tiébélé towns.

Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


East Kasem, West Kasem. West and East Kasem mutually inherently intelligible. Reportedly similar to Nuni [nuv] and Lyélé [lee].


SVO; postpositions; genitives, articles, adjectives, numerals after noun heads; relatives after or without noun heads; no more than one affix per word; word order distinguishes subjects, objects, indirect objects, topic and comment; causatives; comparatives; CV, CVC, CVV; tonal.

Language Use

All ages. Also use French [fra], Mòoré [mos].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 15%. Literacy rate in L2: 15% French, 15% Mòoré. Dictionary. Grammar. NT: 1988–1997.

Latin script [Latn].

Other Comments

Ethnic autonym: Kasena. East Kasem is more prestigious. Loanwords from French and Mòoré in Burkina Faso, English, Akan [aka] in Ghana. Traditional religion, Christian.

Also spoken in:

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