Amazigh means “free man”.
Amazigh is the name given to the original inhabitants of North Africa and to their descendants.
The imazighen (plural of amazigh) constitute one of the most ancient peoples of humanity. Their presence in Tamazgha (North Africa) dates back 10,000 years.
Today, it is the only truly autochthon people of North Africa. It consists of different ethnic groups that share a common ancestral language which is the basic element of identity and the main foundation of their culture.
In Morocco, the amazigh language has no political status. This situation has caused a significant movement of claim. Most of the amazigh communities live in poor and inhospitable mountainous regions, of difficult access and badly communicated. A natural barrier to avoid the “Arabization”.
The images of this book are of an Amazigh nomad tribe, Aigtata. These nomads live moving between the mountains of the sierra of Sahro, desert area at aproximately 2000m above the sea level.
Three years ago a nomad school was opened. The school is part of a UNESCO project of transhumance and biodiversity.
Since nomad children could not go to school, one that could move with them was planned. A tent that is easily assembled and disassembled so that it could follow their rythms of life. Children can also walk for three miles, through the desert Mountains to reach the school. Here they learn to write and read both in Arabic and in their mother tongue language.
They are Amazigh, they will be free men.