STYLE AND STYLE SHIFTING IN EDUCATED SPOKEN ARABIC OF JORDAN
Ph.D. Dissertation, 1988
This study starts with a re-examination of the linguistic situation in
the Arabic world, with particular reference to Arabic as it is spoken
in Jordan. It concludes that neither the diglossic model (Ferguson 1959),
nor the triglossic model (Hussein 1980) or any other linguistic model
can be seen as an adequate description of the linguistic situation there.
This study proposes a tetraglossic model where Classical Arabic (CA),
Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), Educated Spoken Arabic (ESA) and Colloquial
Arabic (KA) are claimed to exist. ESA has been selected to be the focus
of this study because the number of its speakers increase rapidly and
because of the interesting factors which led to its emergence. Educated
Spoken Arabic of Jordan has been identified at two levels, the linguistic
level: phonological, morphological, syntactic, and lexical levels, and
at the social level: a number of extra-linguistic factors which lead to
the use of ESA rather than the other Arabic varieties. This study tackles
in a rather detailed way the description of the speech of educated Arabic
speakers, the different styles of speech they use. The description of
the styles of speech of such speakers has been achieved in light of: (1)
Labov's (1966, 1972) contextual styles. (2) Giles and Smith's (1979) Accommodation
Theory. (3) Scotton's (1983) Principle of Negotiation. Another major concern
of this study is style-shifting in ESA and the major motivations of this
process. The above three principles have been incorporated again to discuss
this second major theme. These principles have been found promising to
discuss style and style-shifting in Arabic. The data in this dissertation
come from a fieldwork conducted in the United States, a questionnaire
distributed to Jordanian informants in Jordan and a reasonable size of
recorded speech from the Jordanian TV and radio.
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