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Why is Arabic perceived difficult to learn

Apr 18,2023 - Last updated at Apr 18,2023

The Arabic language has been around for centuries, and it is the language of over 420 million people across the world. However, despite its vast use, many people still view it as a difficult language to learn and even fear it. The reasons for this perception are complex, and they are not necessarily based on the actual complexity of the language itself. In this essay, I will explore the reasons behind this so-called "syndrome of the Arabic language" and whether the language is genuinely difficult to learn.

One of the main reasons why people perceive Arabic as a difficult language is psychological. This is particularly true for individuals who have mastered the English language. When comparing the ease of learning English with that of Arabic, the latter seems much more complicated. It is crucial to note, however, that comparing the two languages does not necessarily mean that one is better than the other. In this case, the difficulty people have in learning Arabic could be attributed to the difference in structure and writing system.

Another reason people find Arabic challenging to learn is the teaching methods used. Unfortunately, the means of teaching Arabic have not evolved with the times, and many educators still use outdated teaching methods. This lack of development means that the language loses its power when compared to others, which have embraced new teaching approaches. To bridge this gap, Arabic language educators must work to modernise the teaching methods used to make the language more accessible and less intimidating.

The third reason why people find Arabic difficult to learn is that much of the content written in Arabic is unattractive and fails to meet their needs. When compared to other languages, Arabic has fewer options for entertainment and reading materials, which makes it less appealing to people. This lack of interest can then result in people feeling overwhelmed when trying to learn the language.

The fourth reason why people view Arabic as a difficult language to learn is that English is seen as the language of the victors, the most advanced countries, and a part of an integrated cultural system. In other words, English is seen as the language of success, and this success is often associated with power, wealth, and prestige. As a result, many people feel that learning English is a more critical investment in their future than learning Arabic.

While the "Syndrome of the Arabic Language" may not exist scientifically in psychiatry, it is still a real issue among many people. However, there is hope for the progress of the Arabic language, and it can participate in the progress of civilisation. It is not a battle between Arabic, English, or other languages. Instead, it is a battle that the Arabic language must fight with itself. This fight involves modernising teaching methods, producing attractive and relevant content, and presenting the Arabic language as a viable alternative to English.

In conclusion, many people who believe that learning Arabic is difficult have a perception known as the "Syndrome of the Arabic Language and People". However, this perception is not necessarily based on the complexity of the language itself but is rather psychological, based on outdated teaching methods, unattractive content, and the cultural perception of English as a language of success. While there is no easy solution to this issue, the Arabic language has the potential to progress and thrive if educators can modernise their teaching methods, and content creators can produce more relevant and exciting materials. Ultimately, the battle for the Arabic language's success is one that must be fought by the language itself, and as a speaker of it, I think it is a battle worth fighting.

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