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Teaching Arabic Syntax for Non-Speakers: A Pragmatic Approach

Manal Najjar
Arabic Department, University of Tabuk, Tabuk, Saudi Arabia

Abstract—In spite of the noticeable progress witnessed in the research fields of modern linguistics, the process of teaching syntax to Non- native speakers still relies on traditional and formal methods and does not properly benefit from the linguistic research outcome with regard to “contextual pragmatics”. At the present, context is considered the center of pragmatics where meaning is emphasized in relation to its actual use in a specific situation, i.e. pragmatics deals with the interpretation of meaning in its specific context, establishing a relation between language and context towards a deeper understanding of language. In other words, interpreting the meaning of an utterance requires not only its direct and referential meaning but also equating the utterance with its context (the communicative situation, time, place, participants of the communicative event plus all factors that build up the environment of the utterance) to be able to conclude all aspects of the explicit as well as the implicit intended meaning of a well–formed syntactic construct. This paper endeavors to establish a new approach that makes a distinction between two syntactic concepts: “linguistic syntax” and “contextual syntax”. Understanding these two concepts means understanding a wide range of language meanings and functions expressed in a specific situational context. Contextual syntax in particular enrich syntactic interpretation with deeper, more comprehensive and elaborate understanding. This approach will help language users to use proper constructs in their proper situations to avoid ambiguity or misinterpretation of the message intended. The Non- native speakers today are in dire need for a new philosophy and approach in dealing with language, being equipped with more comprehensive competence that could enable them use the language properly as a means of expressing the linguistic functions, each in its syntactic form as well as contextual situation proper.
Index Terms—pragmatics, syntax, context, functions

Cite: Manal Najjar, "Teaching Arabic Syntax for Non-Speakers: A Pragmatic Approach," International Journal of Learning and Teaching, Vol. 6, No. 4, pp. 252-256, December 2020. doi: 10.18178/ijlt.6.4.252-256

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