Franklin

LEXICAL AND PHONOLOGICAL VARIATION IN SPOKEN ARABIC IN AMMAN [electronic resource].

Author/Creator:
ABDEL-JAWAD, HASSAN RASHID E.
Format/Description:
Book
411 p.
Subjects:
Linguistics
Local subjects:
0290
System Details:
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Summary:
The purpose of this study was to describe objectively the linguistic reality in an Arab speech community, i.e. Amman. Instead of trying, like many other studies, to identify some "discrete", "homogeneous' and "well-defined" varieties between the H variety and the L variety in a diglossic language, this study was concerned with the relationship between the two extremes in the framework of the variation model. The study tried to show empirically that co-variation exists at all levels between the linguistic behavior and the extralinguistic constraints, and that this variation is structured and socially and stylistically functional.
To achieve the primary goals, the research was oriented towards studying language in its social context. An extensive amount of data was collected from Amman. 170 speakers representing various social categories were recorded in different contexts. The advanced quantitative methods pioneered by Labov and his associates were adopted in the analysis. Lexical variation as well as two phonological variables, i.e. (Q)-standardization and (k)-standardization were investigated.
Findings and Conclusions. (1) In support of the theoretical approaches which call for the incorporation of the extralinguistic constraints in the grammar, this study has shown that lexical and phonological variation is entirely extralinguistically conditioned with no linguistic conditioning. (2) It was also found that there are many true mergers in spoken Arabic which can be reversed without confusion or hypercorrection on the part of the speakers. (3) The present study demonstrated and explained the various devices, i.e. standardization, urbanization (adoption of Urban forms) and Bedouinization (adoption of Bedouin forms), of stylistic and linguistic modifications in spoken Arabic. (4) One of the most important conclusions is that sex differentiation plays a major role in linguistic variation and change and that unlike in Western communities, women in the Arab world use the standard prestigious forms less often than men, but they use the Urban variants more often than men. (5) It was concluded that variability in spoken Arabic is persistent, and therefore it is very unlikely to predict change unless a feature is highly stigmatized, e.g. the FellaHi {c}. (6) Finally, the present study concluded that it is more promising to describe the linguistic situation in the Arabic speaking world in the framework of variation models rather than defining discrete, homogeneous and well-defined varieties.
Notes:
Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 42-11, Section: A, page: 4814.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Pennsylvania, 1981.
Local notes:
School code: 0175.
Contributor:
University of Pennsylvania.
Contained In:
Dissertation Abstracts International 42-11A.
Access Restriction:
Restricted for use by site license.
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