Chair of Arabic Studies
The activities of the Chair of Arabic studies focus on the study of the Arabic language varieties, their history, structure and use.
With about 350 million speakers, Arabic is one of the largest languages of the World, spoken mostly – but not exclusively – in Africa and Asia, where the 22 states of the Arab League have it as their official language. Arabic has existed along millennia, with an impressive linguistic stability in what concerns the standard variety, and a high number of non-standard varieties more sensitive to changes connected to social factors. Moreover, it is the language of Qur’an, the Islamic holy book, and of an important body of Islamic literature.
The main focus of the Chair of Arabic Studies is the linguistic and social history of the Arabic language and the current sociolinguistic situation of the broad Arabic-speaking world, i.e. in those countries that share Modern Standard Arabic as an official language, in those where non-standard Arabic varieties are spoken as mother tongue or second language, as a majority or minority language.