While most world languages tend to face challenges with adequate documentation (Jones & Ogilvie, 2013; Farfan & Ramallo, 2010), the growing communicative language in the Middle East in general, and the Gulf countries, in particular, faces a plethora of challenges which range from general socio-cultural concerns to personal safety concerns. This talk highlights the results of an initial investigation where ‘native’ speakers of the Pidgin Middle Eastern language show a great deal of perplexity between private and public use of the language (Dorian, 2010), between the language’s necessity and luxury, and between its high and low sociolinguistic prestige, all intertwined within a communicative context shaped by nativity, need, and social status. It is a psychological and sociolinguistic situation where reticence, fear, and courage play salient roles vis-à-vis this new emerging language. Linguistically, this spoken language is characterized by its structural simplicity, lack of phonological and morphological inflections, and the birth of markers with new and rich sentential and discourse functions.
Maher Bahloul holds a Ph.D. from Cornell University in Linguistics and an MA in Linguistics from Sorbonne University in Paris, France. He has taught courses in language (English, Arabic, and French), translation, and linguistics for the past 30 years. His research interest covers issues in theoretical linguistics, applied linguistics, the sociology of language, teaching and learning pedagogy, the use of arts in education, and Spoken Arabic varieties. He has taught in the United States, North Africa, and the Middle East. Dr. Bahloul has been very active with academic publishing and professional activities. He presented a variety of papers and conducted several workshops in regional and international venues. With around 100 talks and workshops and 30 peer-reviewed books, book chapters and articles, Dr. Bahloul continues to promote the fields of spoken languages, teaching and learning pedagogies, and the use of arts in education.