Sociolinguistic Approaches to Arabic and Spanish in Contact

Arabic and Spanish have a long history of linguistic contact, dating back to the Muslim rule of Spain from 711-1492 in which North African languages and cultures played a critical role in shaping life in the Iberian peninsula. While much of this linguistic and cultural interaction took place in Spain and is often situated as one of historical significance, Arabic-Spanish contact is both global and current, often in diasporic contexts, extending beyond Spain to North Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. However, despite the perpetual contact between these two languages and being a long-standing topic in both Spanish and Arabic linguistics, the interaction between these two languages has been marginalized in linguistic research as an inconsequential contact situation. As a result, there is a scarce amount of research in this area that does not reflect the actual significance of this topic. This edited volume aims to bring together research that employs diverse methodological approaches to examine Spanish-Arabic contact, as well as build on and challenge some of our previous understandings of topics in sociolinguistics.

We invite chapter proposals for this edited volume, tentatively titled Sociolinguistic Approaches to Arabic and Spanish in Contact. This project welcomes submissions with any sociolinguistic framework that looks at synchronic or diachronic contact situations, and particularly encourages research examining language and identity, language maintenance and loss, socio-phonetics, religion and language use, among many others. We are interested in having a diverse set of perspectives and methodologies represented in this edited volume, including quantitative, qualitative and mixed-method approaches. While we welcome any submissions that address Arabic-Spanish contact from a sociolinguistic lens, we particularly seek manuscripts that address one or more of the following broader themes:

  • Language contact phenomena (i.e. phonetic/ phonological, morphosyntactic, lexical)
  • Socio(cultural) linguistic perspectives on language and society
  • Contact-induced variation and change
  • Language and identity
  • Raciolinguistics
  • Bi- and Multilingualism (both individual and societal)
  • Methodological approaches to studying Spanish-Arabic contact
  • Historical linguistic contact
  • Arabic in Judeo-Spanish
  • Sociolinguistic approaches to Spanish-Arabic use in second and heritage learner contexts
  • Translation and interpretation contexts
  • Language in education, both in historical and modern contexts
  • Language policy involving Arabic and Spanish


Proposal guidelines

Length: Up to 1000 words (excluding references)
Content: Research question(s), theoretical and methodological frameworks, findings, and implications
Language: English
Format: doc(x) file

Please submit all proposals and questions to farahali@depauw.edu (Farah Ali), cready@okstate.edu (Carol Ready), and smohamed@mercyhurst.edu (Sherez Mohamed) by Monday, February 7, 2022.

Tentative timeline

Contributors will be notified about the status of their submissions in early March 2022. We are currently developing a book proposal, which will be submitted after final decisions have been made about chapter contributions. At that time, we will ask contributors for brief abstracts to include in the volume proposal, which we aim to submit by April 2022.

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