Language Biography

Aisha Abokraa

My native language is Arabic. There are many varieties of Arabic spoken in different regions and countries in the Arab world (Middle East). I speak the Libyan dialect, which I learned as my first language and which I use in everyday speaking situations. At school I also learned the standardized Arabic (Classical Arabic), which is used in writing and in formal prepared speech.

Formerly, the formal standardized Arabic was the norm; however, over time and for different reasons, different dialects started to appear in different  regions. These different dialects make it a bit challenging for Arabic speakers to be clearly understood by speakers of different Arabic dialects. I tend to adjust my speech to communicate with people from different Arabic-speaking regions. For example, I tend to switch dialects or to avoid using unfamiliar words from my dialect, or attempt to communicate using a commonly understood dialect, such as Lebanese, Egyptian or Syrian. These dialects tend to be commonly understood because of their strong media presence in many countries in the Arab world.

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