If You Know How to Speak English, Why Not Learn Arabic?
By: Mohamed Nada/Arab America Contributing Writer
Have you ever been born in a country where you learn the native language and as you grow you slowly learn the language of which your parents speak from their homeland? For example, imagine you were born in the United States, while both your parents came from Egypt. Since English, is a second language for your parents, it makes it the primary language that you speak.
But why not learn Arabic, just like how your parents learned English. On a website called Languages, they show how many people speak one language, two, etc.:
- Monolingual: A person knowing only one language (40% of the world population)
- Bilingual: A person using or able to use two languages especially with equal fluency (43% of the world population)
- Trilingual: A person speaking three languages fluently (13% of the world population)
- Multilingual: A person who speaks more than two languages, but used often for four languages or more (3% of the world population speak more than 4 languages)
- Polyglot: Someone with a high degree of proficiency in several languages (less than 1‰ of the world population speaks 5 languages fluently)
So Why Learn Arabic as a Second Language?
As the video states, Arabic is one of the most spoken languages and is the 5th most used across the world. As many 422 million people speak the language, which is a crazy number to think about it. Most of the people who speak Arabic either grew up learning it or was thought too as a second language. Not only that but on Istizada, “The word “Arab” means “nomad”, which makes sense considering Arabic originated from nomadic tribes in the desert regions of the Arabian Peninsula. Arabic language evolved from the Nabataean Aramaic script and has been used since the 4th century CE. It is written from right to left, in a cursive style, and includes 28 letters similar to the English alphabet.”
So here are some reasons to learn Arabic:
- Makes conversing with family members easier for them to understand you.
- Gives you more knowledge being that you learned a second language
- Could impress your friends that you know Arabic
- When traveling to Arab countries, you will be able to make out what people are saying without them knowing.
And so and so forth, there are many more reasons why Arabic has its benefits, but you would like to read more on it check it out here.
Is Arabic for Everybody?
In hindsight, everyone can learn Arabic, but it would be very tedious and not something that will taught briskly. Most Arabs do not speak Arabic, but since it is the Holy Qur’an it makes it one of the holy languages.
First off there is a reason why you should know Arabic. One of them is because your entire family revolves around speaking the language so instead of sitting on the side not understanding what they are saying, get up start talking and soak up the whole entire experience. Learning a language gives you more than just what they say, but the culture behind how to language came about.
After all, when you learn Arabic you will be to say words like:
- saba il khayr
- kwayyis, al hamdulillah. wa inta
Just a few useful words, that will benefit you when you talk to Arab person. Why not learn and have fun with it; at the end, you learn more than what you already left with.
Check out Arab America’s blog here!