is a multilingual country.
The original language of Tunisia since ancient times is the Berber language
, but most Tunisians slowly switched to a variety of Arabic, over 13 centuries of Arabization and Islamization.
Sign in Arabic and French at the Sousse Faculty of Medicine.
The vast majority of the population today speaks Tunisian Arabic
(also called Derja
) as their native language, which is mutually intelligible to a limited degree with other Maghrebi Arabic
dialects. Most inhabitants are also literate in Modern Standard Arabic
(i.e. Literary Arabic) taught in primary and secondary education. A significant portion of the population also can speak some French
to varying degrees which was the common language of business and administration during French rule in the region
The Berber language
is still spoken today by some of Tunisians, but they also speak Arabic as a second language.
A person speaking Tunisian Arabic.
(called "shelha" by Arabic-speakers) are mainly spoken in the villages of the south, including Chenini
. They are also spoken in some hamlets on the island of Djerba
, mainly Guellala ,Sedouikech, Azdyuch and Ouirsighen.
During the French colonization of Tunisia
was introduced in public institutions, most notably the education system, which became a strong vehicle for dissemination of the language. From independence, the country gradually became arabized
even though the public administration and education remained bilingual.
Meanwhile, knowledge of French and other European languages (such as English
) is enhanced by Tunisia's proximity to Europe and by media and tourism
The 1990s marked a turning point for the Arabization process. Science classes up to the end of middle school were Arabized in order to facilitate access to higher education and promote the Arabic language in society.
Since October 1999, private establishments have been obliged to give Arabic characters
twice the size of Latin characters
This rule is not always followed, however. At the same time, the public administration is required to communicate in Arabic only. In this context, the use of French seems to be in decline despite the increased number of graduates in the educational system, which leads to the fact that a good knowledge of French remains an important social marker.
This is because French is widely used in the business community, intellectual domains and the spheres of natural science and medicine. Because of this, one can consider the language to have become gentrified.
Thus, French in Tunisia is a prestige language
- ^ (in French) Aménagement linguistique en Tunisie (Université de Laval) Archived 2009-06-02 at the Wayback Machine
- ^ « Travaux de phonologie. Parlers de Djemmal, Gabès, Mahdia (Tunisie) et Tréviso (Italie) », Cahiers du CERES, Tunis, 1969
- ^ (in French) Tilmatine Mohand, Substrat et convergences: Le berbére et l'arabe nord-africain (1999), in Estudios de dialectologia norteafricana y andalusi 4, pp 99–119
- ^ (in Spanish) Corriente, F. (1992). Árabe andalusí y lenguas romances. Fundación MAPFRE.
- ^ Elimam, Abdou (1998). ' 'Le maghribi, langue trois fois millénaire. ELIMAM, Abdou (Éd. ANEP, Algiers 1997), Insaniyat. pp. 129–130.
- ^ A. Leddy-Cecere, Thomas (2010). Contact, Restructuring, and Decreolization:The Case of Tunisian Arabic (PDF). Linguistic Data Consortium, Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures. pp. 10–12–50–77.
- ^ Zribi, I., Boujelbane, R., Masmoudi, A., Ellouze, M., Belguith, L., & Habash, N. (2014). A Conventional Orthography for Tunisian Arabic. In Proceedings of the Language Resources and Evaluation Conference (LREC), Reykjavik, Iceland.
- ^ Daoud, Mohamed (2001). "The Language Situation in Tunisia". Current Issues in Language Planning. 2: 1–52. doi:10.1080/14664200108668018.
- ^ Borg and Azzopardi-Alexander Maltese (1997:xiii) "The immediate source for the Arabic vernacular spoken in Malta was Muslim Sicily, but its ultimate origin appears to have been Tunisia. In fact, Maltese displays some areal traits typical of Maghrebi Arabic although during the past 800 years of independent evolution it has drifted apart from Tunisian Arabic".
- ^ Borg, Albert J.; Azzopardi-Alexander, Marie (1997). Maltese. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-02243-6.
- ^ "The Language in Tunisia, Tunisia | TourismTunisia.com". www.tourismtunisia.com. Retrieved 2017-07-31.
- ^ a b c d e Samy Ghorbal, «Le français a-t-il encore un avenir ? », Jeune Afrique, 27 avril 2008, pp. 77-78
- ^ Stevens, Paul (1980). "Modernism and Authenticity as Reflected in Language Attitudes : The Case of Tunisia". 30, no. 1/2. Civilisations. pp. 37–59.
- ^ "Christian Valantin (sous la dir. de), La Francophonie dans le monde. 2006-2007, éd. Nathan, Paris, 2007, p. 16" (PDF) (in French). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-10-16. Retrieved 2011-03-05. (5.58 MB)
Last edited on 15 April 2021, at 18:02
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