Karam Assany's Blog

Arabic is DEAD, and here's why

Today, a very few linguistics are brave enough to say that Arabic is a dead language. However, the definition of "Arabic" varies within different perspectives. So let me introduce my own definition of Arabic. Arabic is apparently a semetic language, which was early spoken intensely in the sixth century, in a place in the south of the Middle East, and got its popularity along with Islam.

There exist three dialects of Arabic that people know today,namely:
  1. The Quranic Old Arabic (QOA): The oldest yet still used version of Arabic, is in fact hardly understandable among MSA speakers. To understand the Quran and the old books in general you should study this version of Arabic. Many Arab people today claim they can understand the Quran because it is written in "their own language". Unfortunately, most of them lies.
  2. The Classical Arabic (CA): This version of Arabic is used in novels and kids cartoons (not always). The CA has one big difference from the QOA; it is understandable, the grammar is the same as the QOA, however, the vocabulary is more modern and up-to-date (the same as MSA). The CA is understandable but very formal.
  3. The Modern Standard Arabic (MSA): The standard language, used in media and official settings. I consider this version a midway between the CA and the native language people grow up speaking. In other words, it is a simplified version of Arabic that is very easy to pronounce for natives. It is considered the lingua-franca in the "Arabian" regions.Why Arabic is dead?Because, obviously, no one use any version of Arabic in their everyday life.Although it's intensely used in the media, the official usage of Arabic made it in the same place with Latin. Both are reserved for offical and religious purposes but no actually use them in everyday speech.