What is it about?

Substantial speech reporting differences exist between MSA and Pre-modern Arabic. These new speech reporting patterns resulted from contact with English. This change probably took place through translation or bilingual writers. The new patterns serve specific functions in the genres in which they are used.

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Why is it important?

Changes in reporting styles are just one aspect of the influence of English on MSA, and much work is required to investigate the various forms, reasons, and implications of such influence. The sporadic attempts made in this direction have generally taken a critical stance that laments the current status of Arabic, or have not recognized the foreign origins of such new patterns. The impact of English on the structure of MSA is so profound that it warrants systematic research that examines newly emerging patterns from a descriptive, explanatory perspective.


In spite of recent interest in speech reporting across languages, little has been written about the development of speech reporting in Arabic and the role of translators and bilingual writers in this respect. The present study is an attempt to fill this gap, depending on corpora representing various historical stages of Arabic.

Dr Ahmed Seddik Al-Wahy
Faculty of Al-Alsun, Ain Shams University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: The influence of English on Modern Standard Arabic speech reporting styles: A corpus-based study, Lingua, April 2021, Elsevier,
DOI: 10.1016/j.lingua.2021.103084.
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