Language and Revolution
Arabic in Lebanon after the October Revolution as a case study
Speakers’ individual and collective identities are socially constructed through their linguistic and social behavior, and inevitably shaped by the socio-political and cultural situation of a region and its observers. It stands to reason, therefore, that significant changes in a community’s linguistic practices are often catalyzed by noteworthy socio-political developments within the same community. In this light, the present study aims to explore recent linguistic developments regarding speakers’ use of Arabic and their perception of its status in Lebanon in the midst of a time of profound social and political change: The October Revolution.
The present study opens with an introduction that reviews Lebanon’s linguistic panorama before October 17th, 2019, and provides a brief synopsis of the succession of events now widely known as ‘The October Revolution’. The second section explains the study’s theoretical approach and the nature of the data. The third and last section focuses on how the events of the October Revolution have, at least temporarily, affected the use and status of Arabic in Lebanon and reshaped this language’s place in the public sphere.
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