- Page Count: 192
- Size: 8 x 8 inches
- Format: Paperback
- Publication Date: May 2004
- Price: $16.95
- ISBN: 978-0-9772827-6-0
Read an article by author Saki Mafundikwa about his graphic design school ZIVA in Zimbabwe, and his thinking behind Afrikan Alphabets for U&lc Online.
Afrikan alphabets have a long history and fantastic variety, and some continue to be in current use today. They are comparatively little known, due largely to their suppression by colonial powers. This book sets the record straight.
An entertaining and anecdotal text explains the wealth of highly graphical and attractive illustrations. Saki Mafundikwa explores writing systems across the Afrikan continent: among others, the scripts of the West African Mende, Vai, Nsibidi, Bamum and the Somali and Ethiopian scripts. Other alphabets, writing styles, paintings, pictographs, ideographs, and symbols are illustrated and compared. All the writing systems are put into the context of their use as a means to impart and record information and to communicate complex ideas.
Take a look at a PDF (file size: 1.3MB) of several sample pages from Afrikan Alphabets.
Saki Mafundikwa is a graphic designer, typographer, and design educator. He holds an MFA in Graphic Design from Yale University and worked and taught in New York City before returning to his country Zimbabwe to found that country? first graphic design and new media college, the Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts (ZIVA). The college opened in 1999, and it continues to operate under extremely difficult conditions, as the country goes through its most challenging era since independence in 1980.