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Centre of African Studies: Studying Africa


The Swahili Team

Teresa Poeta


Teresa focuses her work and research on Bantu languages with a special interest in Swahili, lesser-studied languages of Southern and East Africa and more generally issues of language diversity. She holds a PhD in Linguistics from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and her doctoral thesis ‘Reference to objects in Makhuwa and Swahili discourse’ examined the way speakers refer to participants in different types of narratives. For her research she spent an extensive period of time on fieldwork in Southeast Africa, especially in northern Mozambique. Teresa has been studying, researching and working with the Swahili language throughout her academic career focusing on topics such as Swahili proverbs and idioms or the use of applicatives in spoken and written Swahili. She has also been involved in providing subtitles for Swahili video materials and working as Swahili examiner for international examinations. She recently curated an Africa collection for the Fondazione Basso library in Rome and she is  currently  teaching Swahili undergraduate and postgraduate courses as well as Swahili evening classes at the Centre for Open Learning.