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Alghamdi (2022)

Journal of Research in Language & Translation

Issue No. 1 Vol. 2 (2022)

Najdi and Hijazi Dialects: The Formation in Progress of a Saudi Koine

Najla M. Alghamdi

Department of ForeignLanguages, Taif University, Hawweyyah Campus, Taif 11099, Saudi Arabia


Received: 8/2/2022;Revised: 27/3/2022; Accepted:21/4/2022

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This paper is an exploratory work which attempts to understand the linguistic situation in Saudi Arabia and to test the hypothesis of the emergence of a Saudi koine. To begin with, it is vital to mention that the literature shows that many Saudi dialects are presently in a state of change. This is due to tremendous social and financial changes taking place in the country starting from 1970. A detailed description of these changes is presented in Al-Hathloul and Edadan (1993). The data of the current study was collected from media, in particular, from 26 television advertisements.

Several variants were investigated: diphthongs [aw] and [aj], interdentals [θ], [ð], [ð̄ ˤ] and their stop counterparts [t], [d] and [đ], the affricate [dʒ] and the fricative [ʒ], the affricated and fricative variants of (k) [tʃ] and [ts] and [s] and [ʃ] respectively, and finally the palatalized variant of (k) [kʲ]. The results suggest that there is indeed an emergence of a Saudi koine, however, it is a double-sided koine, with influences from both Najdi and Hijazi dialects. These results go hand in hand with those presented by Al-Rojaie (2020). Another important result that this exploratory work demonstrates is that the use of the Najdi -influenced koine is clearly more prominent than the Hijazi one in the language of advertisements. Nevertheless, in light of the dramatic social change in the country, it is not possible to predict whether the Najdi koine will oust the Hijazi one or if both will continue as two pan-Saudi dialects or whether a mixed dialect will be formed.

Keywords: dialect change; Hijazi; koine; media; Najdi; social change



Last updated on : March 10, 2024 7:08pm