Tut: A Language Used By Enslaved People To Communicate Is Making A Return On TikTok
Photo Credit: Roger Sekoua

Photo Credit: Roger Sekoua

Tut: A Language Used By Enslaved People To Communicate Is Making A Return On TikTok

Parker Diakite
Parker Diakite Aug 24, 2021

Thanks to the power of social media and its influence, Tut — a language once used by enslaved men and women— is resurfacing, and we’re here for it.

According to Omniglot, Tut was created sometime in the 18th Century. The language was used to help the men and women learn to read and write at a time when both literacy and secret languages were forbidden.

Tut words are similar to those in the English language. Each letter, however, is replaced by a word beginning with the sound of the letter. 

The language is something a growing number of Black Americans are interested in, which is evident with the videos and guides being shared by those speaking the language across different social media platforms.


This is making me so happy y’all 🥺 #tutnese #tut #blacktiktok #blackculture #blackhistory #blackgirlmagic #gatekeeping #ados

♬ original sound – Xtina Brown

Other languages that have been preserved by the descendants of enslaved people throughout the years and spoken by Black Americans include Creole, in Louisiana, and Gullah, in South Carolina.

With its growing popularity, there has been some controversy online about who should be learning it. For many Black Americans, learning Tut is a way to connect and pay homage to their ancestors, and many want to keep it that way.

There have been conversations about the language staying under wraps underground, as NBC News first pointed out.


#tutnese #SHEINcares #africanamerican #culture #tut #aa #language

♬ almeda – ₊˚.༄ mia

When a user on Facebook shared the Tut alphabet, commenters called for the post to be taken down.

“This should not be public. It’s for AFRICAN AMERICANS,” one commenter replied.  

But not everyone agrees.

A teacher from Kansas City says she’s currently learning the language and rejects the idea of Tut being exclusive, stating, “I disagree with those who say Tut should remain a secret language. I don’t think any parts of our heritage should be hidden. Black America has had so much stolen and destroyed. We are just now, at mass, discovering parts of historical culture that belong to us.”


What are your thoughts? 

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