The Use of Dialectal Tanwin in Qatari Arabic
AbstractThe aim of the present paper is to analyse the use of dialectal tanwīn in the Arabic dialect of Qatar. Section (1) provides a brief description of the linguistic situation in Qatar and attempts a definition for the general label “Qatari Arabic”. Section (2) examines the function and contexts of use of the tanwīn in other dialects of the area: dialects are taken into account for which material is available in the current literature, and that can be related to Qatari Arabic in terms of either common origin or geographical proximity. Section (3) describes the use of dialectal tanwīn in Qatari Arabic by presenting original examples drawn from oral interviews gathered on the field with Qatari natives: these examples cover a variety of syntactic contexts, all involving an indefinite nominal (namely a noun or an active participle) followed by some modifying element (an adjective, an adverb, a direct object or a prepositional phrase). Some examples are also provided concerning the use of dialectal tanwīn in set phrases and idiomatic expressions. Finally, section (4) tries to assess the position of Qatari Arabic within the frame of the other peninsular dialects with regard to the use of tanwīn, and gives some insight on the evolution of this phenomenon over time.
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