Tag Archives: Sociolinguistics

A Consonant Shift in Kuwait: Challenging the Bedouin Vs Sedentary Hypothesis? The Case Of [ʧ] (Published)

In light of sociolinguist phonological change, the following study investigates the shift of [ʧ] to [k] sound in the speech of Kuwaitis and argues against the Bedouin/ Sedentary distinction. The main hypothesis is twofold: first the shift seems to be driven not by the differences between the sedentary and Bedouin varieties, but by the widespread of the English language as a prestige form and by the recent change of Kuwaitis’ lifestyle; second, the shift is not totally in the direction of [k], but rather in the direction of a lexical replacement by either English loanwords, classical Arabic, or other Arab dialects. To test this hypothesis, 130 informants were informally interviewed. 503 tokens were collected and were examined across gender, age, level of education. Their speech was phonetically transcribed and accordingly was quantitatively and qualitatively analyzed. Results indicate that the [ʧ] variant is undergoing change and that the social parameters and the significant social changes, that Kuwait has undergone recently, have triggered this linguistic shift.

Keywords: Kuwaiti Variable, Phonology, Social Parameters, Sociolinguistics


This study aimed at investigating language choice among Arabs of Quebec– Canada. It also explored Arabs’ attitudes towards Arabic, French and English in particular and factors involved in using these languages. In order to achieve the objectives of the study, the researchers selected a sample that consisted of (100) Arab respondents who reside in Quebec– Canada, covering different age ranges, gender, and educational backgrounds. The instrument of the study was a sociolinguistic questionnaire. Results showed that Arabs of Quebec– Canada have positive attitudes towards Arabic, English and French. They freely use their Arabic language in the domain of home and with family members, in worship places and when listening to the radio. In addition, they use English and French in Governmental offices and formal applications and in educational institutions. Results also showed that Arabs of Quebec mix these languages in the domain of neighborhood, with friends, and media.

Keywords: Arab Canadians, Attitudes, Language Choice, Sociolinguistics