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Language Club- How do you say...? Languages, Translations...What's the word, yo?!

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Old 01-02-2006, 10:46 PM   #1
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how hard is it to learn, and if one wanted to, what is the best way to go about learning it? thanks!
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Old 01-03-2006, 12:12 AM   #2
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Mmm. I've no idea. I know it's pretty hard to go from one alphabet system to another. I just know a few words, but no idea how to write them down. However I do know the numbers, and I dont think I'll ever forget them. I had to learn the hard way (I wanted to shop and I didn't want to ask for the price as then you start a bargain war were you have to buy whatever it is you asked the price for in the first place).

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Old 01-03-2006, 12:54 AM   #3
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well i used to live and go to school in dubai, and had arabic lessons for abit, still remember some basic phrases and how to read it, and write it (altho unfortunately not understand it ). never really learnt it properly tho because english was spoken pretty much everywhere which i regret slightly now.
still, once u can get over the alphabet switching and some of the letter pronounciation, i reckon its pretty much like learning any other language....from what i can remember...bear with me if im wrong :P
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Old 01-03-2006, 01:08 AM   #4
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Hey, Welcome to TPunk! ( I noticed that this is your first post since you registered 6 mo's ago !)



I believe that Bellelasse knows a bit of Arabic.
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Old 01-03-2006, 09:09 AM   #5
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I've been studying Fooshah for two years and know a bit of colloquial Moroccan. For me, the hardest part was learning the alphabet and all the consonant sounds that dont exist in english. I'd tear my hair out and spend upwards of four hours a night studying- copying letters, listening carefully to the cds, etc etc. I almost quit. Dunno why I had such a block about it. Then in the beginning of second year I was a bit irritated by the arcane grammar we had to learn, Im much more interested in just communicating with regular people than in reading erudite 15th century poetry. I love the language. Its precise, beautiful, expressive and I think it has a very lyrical quality on the ear. my mother, on the other hand, thinks its the ugliest sounding thing she's ever heard. hehe. Anyway, its very rewarding to me, and I even changed my major because I loved it so much. I say if you want to learn it, go for it, and dont dont dont dont dont let yourself quit no matter what. Its an amazing language.
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Old 01-03-2006, 09:14 AM   #6
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Also, I would reccomend taking a course taught by a real professor. Its not something you can take much from if you pick up a few books and cds at the bookstore and decide to teach yourself. Dont take it from anyone who claims its easy, or promises that you will be fluent in a year or six months or a month or whatever because they are lying to you. I was already proficient in two languages before I took arabic and it was still quite a lot of work. Besides, there are so many words in arabic that dont even have a concept in english(let alone a word or even a phrase), you kind of have to figure it out and hear it in context often to understand. I'm not fluent and I've been working on it a little over two years now. I hope I might be in a few more. Best of luck to you!
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Old 01-03-2006, 10:54 AM   #7
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thanks. thats sounds awesome!!
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Old 01-03-2006, 12:42 PM   #8
 
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One of the things I would like to do once I am a bit more settled is to learn Arabic...you also might check with a local mosque to see if they offer any kind of introduction to Arabic course or instruction.
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Old 01-03-2006, 01:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by xanthuos@Jan 3 2006, 04:42 PM
One of the things I would like to do once I am a bit more settled is to learn Arabic...you also might check with a local mosque to see if they offer any kind of introduction to Arabic course or instruction.
[snapback]96256[/snapback]
where are you located??
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Old 01-03-2006, 01:30 PM   #10
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I definitely want to learn! Knowing a LOT about Arabic music and having a fairly extensive collection of it, I can sing along with tons of songs... and there are even a few words & phrases I understand. But that's about it on my comprehension.

Ah well, I guess being able to pronounce the words correctly is a step in the right direction!!
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Old 01-03-2006, 02:43 PM   #11
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as son as I master engrish I be learning a new won....language that is



iangod: I would absolutly LOOOOVE to go to dubai. how was it? When were you there?? post some pictures for us!!!!
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Old 01-04-2006, 01:19 AM   #12
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heh... i was born in abu dhabi and lived there til i was about 11, then moved to dubai and lived there until i was 16 (that was 2003) when i moved back to england. fortunately enough my parents are still in dubai so i get to go back fairly regularly for xmas and easter. in fact im there at the moment
i personally really like the place, although there's so much stuff being built all over the place its pretty much unrecognisable if you leave for a mere six months!
take yesterday...i went skiing in the indoor snowdome they've just built
weather's great, especially late september til about april...try moving to england after living in near perfect temperatures for 16 years lol, lots of beaches, quite a bit of stuff to do.
only real downsides are a drinking age of 21 and i guess only a small number of nightclubs if you like that sorta stuff, although there are plenty of bars. plus the perpetual construction means roadworks almost everywhere you go
Still, definitely worth a visit
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Old 01-04-2006, 11:18 AM   #13
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I studied linguistics for a while and I can tell you that semitic languages (Arabic being the predominant one in the world of course) are absolutely fascinating. They're a purer, more logical form of language from an older time that have managed to resist being overly dominated by foreign influence and still maintain their essence and stark logic, while absorbing just enough of the culture of each region they are spoken in to make them amazingly expressive and unique.

I'm studying Hebrew right now since I'll be living in Israel for hashem-knows-how-long, and being close cousin languages plus having Arab friends and coworkers I have picked up some very basic colloquial Arabic along the way...both languages are in the semitic tree and have similarities, though Hebrew died for 2000 years being replaced by Aramaic in Jesus' time and was deliberately resurrected by the Zionist movement in the years prior to Israel's independence, and is a VERY close descendent of Canaanite (a tribal language circa 3000 years ago) whereas Arabic has a far richer, more diverse tribal history and has been spoken and developed in all forms unbroken since proto-semitic days (several thousand years ago). Don't tell that to any Israelis...

Arabic is an amazingly expressive language, but the tribal influence has caused it to have dialects as wide and diverse as the borders of the Arab world itself; the Palestinian dialect of Arabic is only spoken here, in Lebanon and in western/northern Jordan. The further you get from a region, the more diverse the dialect becomes...Moroccan and Algerian Arabic have incredible French influence, and it's possible a Palestinian or Jordanian would have no clue what many sentences mean in the course of a conversation, and a Saudi might have the same problem with all of them!

That said, it's probably the richest and most diverse language in the world. It's also probably the hardest, or close to it. I recommend it 100% but I enjoy the abuse of difficult languages . Good luck at any rate, and know that knowing even some arabic will carry you VERY, VERY, VERY FAR if you decide to brave the Middle East and "Greater Middle East" (northern Africa, etc). Trust me on this one.

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Old 01-10-2006, 11:19 PM   #14
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My Japanese teacher always said you become fluent in Japan after 3 months, so it is at all similiar in the Middle East?
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Old 01-10-2006, 11:26 PM   #15
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with a solid foundation, a quick ear, and complete immersion I dont see how you couldnt become fluent in anything after a few months. I think you might still have somewhat of an accent though.
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Old 01-11-2006, 12:11 AM   #16
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Oh, that gives me some hope then! I always think of Arabic as the impossible language (well, for me) which makes me want to learn it more so...

mm.. Now I could see myself having basic speaking skills

Good on ya for sticking to it! (i got bored doing japanese in the end)
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:06 PM   #17
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I have taken beginner's Arabic approximately THREE times. I can say "I don't know" and "I don't remember" like a native. I'm still bashful conversationally though, so when Arabic speakers (particularly Arabs) pressure me into speaking, I just say dejeja over and over. (Chicken, fyi.) Then when they press for more, I say dejeja jedeeda (new chicken). That makes them laugh long enough to leave me alone! I wish I had been a little more bold when I was still in classes for it, because now I have very little time and only self-study.

This is an EXCELLENT blog about one man's attempts to learn Arabic. Makes me want to go to Yemen and study sooo badly: Arabist Fancy

I've picked up a little here and there from friends, so if anyone ever needs the Arabic word for mermaid, I'm your gal!!
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:50 PM   #18
 
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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(nemesis331 @ Jan 3 2006, 04:06 PM) [snapback]96262[/snapback]</div>
Quote:
where are you located??
[/b]
Chris, I never responded to this - sorry about that! At the time I wrote this message, I was in Helsinki, Finland - basically living there for a little over a month. It was not long after I decided to travel for at least a year, having no fixed address during that time (my last "residence" in terms of legal standing was on Long Island). I made it almost that long - I started renting a place in Nashville in August. Not surprisingly, I still haven't stopped traveling since though. Matter of fact, I'm headed up to NY on Monday! If you can get away from school and take the boring train ride into the city, we should grab a beer. I've got a topic in the Meet-Up section.

Anyways, getting back on topic...
I still want to learn conversational Arabic. All I know is curses haha.
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Old 10-16-2006, 06:00 PM   #19
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Haha, I'm in. Let me know.

Good luck with your trip!
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Old 10-26-2006, 07:17 AM   #20
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I did very beginner level conversational Moroccan Arabic while on a recent trip there and I found it very fun and easy. I guess I did have a little bit of an advantage because I can speak Malay- pronunciation wise. However it will be a long way before I actually think about doing the whole works (written).
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