Sunday, June 29, 2008
I like Amira's list of 5 other reasons to study Arabic.
For me, Arabic doesn't have much practical value anymore--right now I don't have Arabic-speaking neighbors or Arabic street signs and documents to read--but I enjoy languages and learning about different cultures so there's still value in it to me. Also, you never know when a situation will come up where you can use even very basic language skills you've acquired.
This is a silly example, but we recently had a chance to visit the Museum of Idaho's new World of the Pharaohs exhibit. While there I noticed that some of the artwork (modern papyrus paintings), on display along with the ancient artifacts, had been signed by the artists in Arabic, and it was fun reading the artists' names and getting the kids to come read along with me. Before we moved to the UAE, Arabic was so far off my radar I never would have thought about reading anything in Arabic script. I still don't know much Arabic vocabulary-wise, but even being able to read it phonetically is really fun.