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A Reference Grammar of Modern Standard Arabic

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Keeping technical terminology to a minimum, this comprehensive handbook provides a detailed yet accessible overview of Arabic wherein its phonology, morphology and syntax can be readily accessed. Accompanied by extensive examples, it will prove an invaluable practical guide for supporting students' textbooks, classroom work or self-study, and a useful resource for scholars Keeping technical terminology to a minimum, this comprehensive handbook provides a detailed yet accessible overview of Arabic wherein its phonology, morphology and syntax can be readily accessed. Accompanied by extensive examples, it will prove an invaluable practical guide for supporting students' textbooks, classroom work or self-study, and a useful resource for scholars and professionals.


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Keeping technical terminology to a minimum, this comprehensive handbook provides a detailed yet accessible overview of Arabic wherein its phonology, morphology and syntax can be readily accessed. Accompanied by extensive examples, it will prove an invaluable practical guide for supporting students' textbooks, classroom work or self-study, and a useful resource for scholars Keeping technical terminology to a minimum, this comprehensive handbook provides a detailed yet accessible overview of Arabic wherein its phonology, morphology and syntax can be readily accessed. Accompanied by extensive examples, it will prove an invaluable practical guide for supporting students' textbooks, classroom work or self-study, and a useful resource for scholars and professionals.

30 review for A Reference Grammar of Modern Standard Arabic

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan Mckay

    What makes Arabic hard? This question is one of the fundamental and repeated queries of the Arabic student. Neophytes may think it’s the alphabet, others may think it’s the vocabulary, but I believe, and I think that many others would agree with me in saying that the most difficult part of Arabic is grammar. Since many grammar rules are never exposed in most verbal or written texts, it is possible for even advanced students of the language to maintain little more than an elementary proficiency i What makes Arabic hard? This question is one of the fundamental and repeated queries of the Arabic student. Neophytes may think it’s the alphabet, others may think it’s the vocabulary, but I believe, and I think that many others would agree with me in saying that the most difficult part of Arabic is grammar. Since many grammar rules are never exposed in most verbal or written texts, it is possible for even advanced students of the language to maintain little more than an elementary proficiency in syntax and grammar. I even remember one Saudi student in Spokane telling me it was easier for him to write papers in English than it was for him to write them in Arabic. So, it became inevitable that I should read a grammar book other than the isolated (although deftly composed) lessons in the Al-Kitaab series. Based on other reviews, I picked up A Reference Grammer of Modern Standard Arabic, by Karin C. Ryding, and I have not been disappointed. Perhaps contrary to the expectations of the author, I read the text straight through and was gratified to see it start from letters and continue on to words, with the most difficult part of verbs and conjugation coming at the end. The mast surprising thin about this book was its accessibility. I read it all in about 4 days, and while it will certainly take me more time to memorize and internalize all the new concepts and words I feel like I have a vastly improved knowledge of Arabic grammar than before I read this book. The most helpful tool for this is the fact that the majority of the 700 pages is devoted to phrase-level and sentence level examples, from form XII verbs to rules governing the seat of Hamza within words. While the book covers all the rules a student would practically want to know, references to other works are made throughout to more detailed analyses. Finally the nearly complete lack of linguistic terminology was a significant boon to my comprehension. In the rare instances that a linguistic term (English) was used, it was always clearly explained before being used by the author. There were three drawbacks to the book, none of which were particularly troublesome . First Ryding has a troubling tendency to state when patterns can be used, not when they cannot. For example in her explanation on adverbs, she say the phase bi-shakal can be used in some cases, and in some cases the adjective in منصوب alone suffices. I still have no clear idea when I should use one over the other. Even explaining the use as idiomatic or that it is difficult to discern would have been more helpful. Also, many rules are repeated through different section of the book, without the addition of any real new information. Finally, the placement of Verbs at the end of the book and the organization of dividing based on pattern (I-XV) rather than verb type, such as hollow or weak, would have been extraordinarily confusing were I not already familiar with the rules via Al-Kitaab. As a reference book or grammar study guide, this book is far more useful than Al-Kitaab, Arabic Grammar by W. Wright, or any of the paperback sized books that cover the main rules but do not give the depth of analysis or the myriad of examples given by a serious reference work like this.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra

    This book is really good. It is easy to use, was written by someone who knows English, and is really comprehensive.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Lorin Kleinman

    This isn't a book you'd want to read straight through, but if you're learning Arabic and want to understand the grammar, it's an extraordinarily useful resource, in which you can either get quick answers or read extremely long explanations that give all available information about a topic. So it's likely to be useful throughout someone's Arabic studies. This isn't a book you'd want to read straight through, but if you're learning Arabic and want to understand the grammar, it's an extraordinarily useful resource, in which you can either get quick answers or read extremely long explanations that give all available information about a topic. So it's likely to be useful throughout someone's Arabic studies.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Peter Twele

    Excellent Resource!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Pequeniosaltamontes

  6. 4 out of 5

    Spencer

  7. 5 out of 5

    Robert Miner

  8. 5 out of 5

    Selim

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alanthegreat

  10. 5 out of 5

    Luke

  11. 5 out of 5

    Scott

  12. 4 out of 5

    Soner Akdağ

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ahmed

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mike Small

  15. 5 out of 5

    Bob

  16. 4 out of 5

    Robert

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rizwan Raiyan

  18. 4 out of 5

    Robert Miner

  19. 5 out of 5

    Badrul Aini Sha'ari

  20. 4 out of 5

    Raiyan Ahsan

  21. 5 out of 5

    Richard

  22. 4 out of 5

    Patria

  23. 4 out of 5

    Michael Towns

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey

  25. 4 out of 5

    Eric Lowe

  26. 5 out of 5

    Indran Fernando

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Al Motairi

  28. 5 out of 5

    Marcel

  29. 5 out of 5

    Clarke

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

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