niedziela, 29 maja 2016


Have you ever wondered how many English words you can find in the Arabic language? In fact, there are plenty of them! What was the main reason of it? How are they conveyed in a language with a different alphabet?

First of all, there are multiple processes that caused Arabic language to become enriched by foreign terminology, and the borrowings themselves come from a variety of sources. Scientists generally agree that the main reason why contemporary Arabic dictionaries are getting richer in loanwords is known to Arabs as the West. It is important to remember that the exchange of words between languages and cultures is progressing in both directions.

The transfer of foreign ideas and terminology from Western languages to the Arabic, has given birth to different methods of creating loanwords. Those methods were introduced in the medieval times, when the Western cultures began to influence the Arabic vocabulary on a great scale. There are two major schools of creating new words:

Taˁrīb known also as arabization, is focused on transcribing the form of foreign vocabulary using the letters of Arabic alphabet. Even though nationalist scholars generally oppose this method, claiming that it may cause the overflow of foreign words into Arabic, it is still frequently used, especially in technical terminology. Examples of this method are words such as تليفون /tilīfūn/, راديو /rādiū/, الفيسبوك /al-fīsbūk/, سينما /sīnamā/, كامرة /kāmira/, أفاتار /afātār/ and other words that in their form reflect the English pronunciation of borrowed units.

Ištiqāq is a method of coining equivalents of foreign vocabulary using Arabic roots. The opponents of this method claim, that overusing Arabic words to explain foreign phenomena may lead to confusion. Examples of ištiqāq are words such as: بريد إلكتروني /barīd ‘iliktrūnī/ meaning e-mail, رافعة الأثقال /rāfiˁat al-aṯqāl/ as elevator or هاتف /hātif/ meaning telephone.

sobota, 16 kwietnia 2016

Secrets Of Success
Have you ever wondered how to achieve success? I bet you did and so did I. Since I suffer from a lack of motivation from time to time, I decided to find a guide that would help me recharge my depleted incentive. Is there any better motivation than achieving success? I think not. Let Richard St. John enlighten you how to do it.
Firstly, it's all about the passion. Whatever you do, do it for love and not for money. If you do it for love, money comes anyway. Another story is that loving what you do is not enough. You still need to work hard because hard work always pays off. In other words, practice, practice and practice... Just don't forget to have fun at the same time! Needless to say that you have to try your best to be great at whatever you decide to do in your life in order to achieve success. It's also advisable to focus on just one thing. Rejecting shyness and self-doubt is a must, though. Just believe in yourself! Lastly, surround yourself with people who are going to support you. At a pinch, enjoy watching the video:

Make people want to listen to you

I suppose that you all got the impression that somebody didn't want to listen to you at least once in a lifetime. You may think that it's all about being interesting, good-looking or well thought of. As a matter of fact, controlling what you say and the way you speak is more important here. There are common mistakes called "7 deadly sins of speaking" which you should avoid so that people want to listen to you.
First one is gossiping. In other words, speaking ill of somebody who is not present. Do you know why is it so important not to do that? Because one can be afraid that you will do the same thing to him after 5 minutes or so. Second one is negativity. People don't like being surrounded by sceptics and pessimists. There isn't much more that can be said about it. Then, judging people. It's really hard for somebody to enjoy their conversation when they know they are going to be judged afterwards. Another "sin" that should be avoided is complaining. Many of you do that, don't you? Unfortunately, it's what really makes a conversation weary, unless you have the subject to complain about ;). Fifth mistake is finding excuses which means blaming everything around, except you. Penultimate reason that makes people ignore you is embroidery. Some of you probably may argue if it's already a lie or not, but it doesn't really matter. The thing is that as soon as people realise that you like embellishing your stories, they won't trust you. Finally, dogmatism is what you should be aware of. In other words, presenting your opinions as if they were facts. For more information, I recommend watching the video below:

piątek, 15 kwietnia 2016


Hello guys. This time I will show you quite a peculiar video in which a guy speaking Japanese tells you about the Arabic language. Don't worry! He provides you with English subtitles... You should know that Arabic is spoken in 24 countries throughout the Middle East and Africa as a native language. If we include all the dialects, Arabic has around 280 million speakers. Arabic belongs to the Semitic branch of the Afroasiatic family like Hebrew. One of the problems that all students of Arabic encounter is known as diglossia. It is time to face the truth. The language people speak in their daily life differs from the language you learn at your university. There are many dialects of Arabic and they can be entirely different from one another. The solution is Modern Standard Arabic which is taught at universities as the language of books, news and business. It is also a good starting point to learn any dialect, if you want to communicate with people around you in your daily life. Another difficulty is that vowels are not written in Arabic. In other words, it means that you have to know a word, even if you just want to read it aloud... In the video below you will find basic words and phrases in Arabic. Enjoy.

poniedziałek, 4 kwietnia 2016

Does the language we speak change our thinking?

Do the languages we speak shape the ways we think? It is a long-standing question that has been asked by many people. According to Charlemagne “to have another language is to possess a second soul”. Does it make any sense to you? In fact, even though the topic used to be unstudiable, we may found now evidence which proves that languages we speak influence our thinking.

As a first example, Lera Boroditsky notes that there’s a language which requires from its speakers to stay constantly oriented. Speakers of that language don’t rely on words like left and right as speakers of most languages we can think of do. They need to be aware of cardinal directions the whole time so that they can speak their language properly. Is it a feature that speakers of other languages have? I dare to doubt and so does Lera Boroditsky asking students to point out south-east with their eyes closed. It turns out that people she asked were not consistent at all while pointing their direction. On the other hand, a young speaker of the language that requires being oriented can do it effortlessly.

Another example relates to “how do we think about time”. For instance, in English we say “the best ahead of us” and “the worst behind us” and we tend to organise time from left to right whereas speakers of Arabic and Hebrew would do it from right to left. There are also languages which don’t have left-right concept. Speakers of such a language would then orient time from east to west or the other way round. 

These are only two examples. If you are looking for more, I would strongly recommend watching the video below: 

wtorek, 8 marca 2016


Welcome everyone on my blog. I would like to share with you some information found on the Internet that I consider to be appealing. Since I've always been interested more in linguistics and practical usage of language rather than literature or culture, I think I'll start with something connected strictly with language.

In the video linked below you will find a short English pronunciation lesson which shows differences in phonetics between British and American English. Even though the video is short and not so detailed, you will notice that British and American pronunciation is ENTIRELY DIFFERENT.

What I find compelling is that in American English we would pronounce double t as d as in better or butter. However, double t is not the rule because t in water is also pronounced as d in American English (in British English it is pronounced as t). What's more, Americans tend to "swallow" letters as in internet or centre pronouncing these words without t this time. On the other hand, British don't pronounce r sound at the end of a word and when it appears before a consonant in the middle of a word. Of course, there are more differences and you'll find in the video only some of them.

What I've personally observed is that most foreigners while speaking English as their second language tend to mix both British and American English. Why is it happening? The reason is that we are constantly being surrounded by an American accent (in films, music etc.)  and then we go to a school, where teachers speak British English. Therefore, it is not surprising that students find it hard to stick to just one accent or perhaps they simply don't appreciate their existence?