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1 Your own articles and opinions. on Fri Aug 14, 2009 6:19 pm


طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
السلام عليكم

Why Has فسحة Come Under Such A Great Deal Of Scrutiny?

I understand that the average Arab does not speak amongst his countrymen in the classical فسحة, some even go as far as to persist that the classical vernacular was not one at all; but rather, a contrived attempt at bringing a literary culture to the forefront. Others ask why Arabs persist to write in a langauge that they do not mirror in speech, (here comparisons can be made to the Bengali language – that is, if you can still call it ‘Bangla’ at all. On one hand, country-folk speak in colloquial dialects – yet any correspondence fails to be sent out in rural chitchat, but rather a preserved Sanskrit reform, namely 'Shuddo BHasha') – many in the Arab world insist in giving precedence to the modern vernaculars and see anything else as being ‘too pretentious.’

I do not agree. Personally, grammatical is being kept in a store cupboard, right at the back where the moths lie in wait. The preservation of such beauty is ravaged by Western pedagogy, and blamed for being the sole reason as to why Arabs are not ‘progressing’ as they are clinging to فسحة - which apparently, ‘belongs to the past.’

There have been calls to bring down the traditions of النحو, بلاغة etc, and replace them with more ‘advanced’ and ‘modern’ Western linguistics. Woe to Romanization – everything seems to be going haywire! Every language seems to contain a smidgen here and there - in the last five centuries, I ask you – which language has remained ever-consistent?

To further deliberate the point, the latest in this long saga is that Arabic is the language of ‘Terrorism’ – yes some even go as far as to believe this nonsense - those without interest as to fate of would agree with any mindset so as to get rid of the literary challenge that is Arabic, once and for all.

The way to cast doubt on Arabic as I see many western academics have done is to simply nullify the sources from which we receive extensive input into the Modern Standard Arabic of today. The options are to buy outside the traditional methods, new dictionaries have been proposed whilst old ones are scrapped – I do not hear much of ‘لسان العرب’ or other publications celebrated by traditional Arab linguists. I have to give a thumbs-up to Hans Wehr though, whom during the war years created his own detailed lexicon of the Arabic language.

Why are many Arabs so interested in learning every other European language except their own? It is almost impossible (and yet abnormally impressive if found) to witness a فسحة speaker who doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb amongst his Arabic-bashing peers. The Arab complex kneads one into frustration – as amusingly, odd French or English words are inserted into the odd Arabic sentence ‘to give depth and weight’ and sense of ‘intellectualism.’ It won’t take long for ‘fine أنا بـ’ to become the mode. Are you with me?

The claim is that فسحة was ne’er a spoken language, but rather 'too challenging for anyone to speak with complete accuracy' – the old dialects have always remained, so pray why would one make it hard for oneself. My answer is ‘Are you blind?’ Can you not see the symmetry of the grammatical structures on the page? Is there no one of you that feel too guilty to destroy the lustre of rhetoric? I would say – the world needs to wake up and smell the vowels, these petals are becoming so rare – if we don’t act fast and see some pioneers like Sibawayh, I doubt I’ll smell a hint of anyone in the next decade with enough energy to correctly decline a sentence - so much for intellect.

12.15am - Sat, 15th Aug 2009

مع السلامة

Last edited by الماس on Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:41 am; edited 1 time in total

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2 Re: Your own articles and opinions. on Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:43 am


طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
That was a really lovely read mashaAllah.

I wasnt aware that فسحة was a topic under scrutinity. Because of my limited understanding I assumed فسحة in and at its best was as much appreciated by society like Shakespearian English is reverred by English speakers in both the academic and non academic feilds.

I guess we learn something new everyday. Wink

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3 Re: Your own articles and opinions. on Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:25 am


طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
!جزاك الله خيراً

I suppose it is all down to understanding. Rather than employing the magnitute of grammatical rules present in فسحة speech, the large majority have become laxative and have inevitably gone for the easy route i.e. colloquial dialects; faster, easier and apparently 'more cool' under the name of 'Modernisation.' Having said this, langauge is not a static concept, and every speaker has somewhat a possessive element upon their own speech code. Try telling a street marsian to stop saying 'Yaa Maan', 'Sick', 'still', 'waagwaan'..(Don't ask).

The way I see it, the average British student at school loathes Shakespeare, but that's probably because they havent yet the capability or interest to sit down and think about a verse like:

'...Love is not love
...O' no! It is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken...'

Most generally think of this line as codswollap but in reality, Shakespeare talks of looking upon a tempest i.e. symbolism of hardship, while employing a concept such as 'Love', nay here - the tempest is no longer an obstacle at all! But rather one of a long line of trivialities that is nothing to a love which 'is never shaken' but is, an 'ever-fixed' mark, clear. Example: The reaction of a patient mother, when her child's frustrations let loose.

In the same way, speak to a cultured, educated politician or academic in the Arab World - even if they fail to reply back to you in correct grammar - there is still likely to be appreciation for Arabic in the air. Go to a developing area, and you'll either be faced with awe or mockery. But hey - What else can Shakespeare hope for in this age?

Nonetheless, I see فسحة as REAL education - love nor money can buy or destroy it. If you try to accomplish some headway in it, there is much reward to be reaped إن شاء الله in the long run. As for the ones who 'can't be bothered', they've become a tool by which they cut themselves off from pure understanding of Hadith, Islamic Exegesis, speaking as the people of Jannah, etc. Let's just say - Ignorance is not bliss in this case.

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4 Problems of Spoken to Written Arabic on Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:31 pm


طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
طالبـــة ابـــن منظـــور
This pdf document by Hussein Maxos, discusses:

  • Why some Arabs don’t like to speak
    Common Misconceptions
    Recommended Solutions
    Dialectical Map
    Spoken and Written on TV and radio broadcasts

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