Language Families of Africa
Language Families of Africa –

This map from Harvard’s AfricaMap project illustrates just how diverse the African continent really is. There are an estimated 1,000 to 2,000 languages spoken across Africa. The map shows 50 of the most commonly spoken according to Marc Felix and Charles Meurs’ 2001 book Peoples’ Atlas of Africa. The interactive map project lets you click on each feature to learn more, and you can add additional layers of environmental, health, religious data and more. 

The Ethnicity Felix 2001 layer consist of polygons and labels depicting ethnicity information based on the “People’s Atlas of Africa” by Marc Felix and Charles Meur, Copyright 2001. These shapefiles were created as part of the Center for Geographic Analysis’s AfricaMap project and were created based upon the People’s Atlas of Africa by scanning, georeferencing, and digitizing the paper atlas. Peoples of Africa Atlas: An ethnolinguistic atlas of Africa edited by Marc Leo Felix, director of the Congo Basin Art History Research Center, Brussels. Cartography by Charles Meur Limited edition in Spanish, 200 copies by Ediciones Oba-Barcelona. English edition, 800 copies by Marc Leo Felix – Tribal Arts s.p.r.l.-Bruxelles 50 color plates, 11 in black and white, A3 Format ISBN 2-930169-04-4




  1. This map is confusing, what’s Chadic/Cushitic? A lot of belong to larger families, I don’t get what they were thinking when they put this together.


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