Naming in Arabic

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1977
Authors
Hawana, Samir
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Quentin G. Johnson
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English

The Department of English seeks to provide all university students with the skills of effective communication and critical thinking, as well as imparting knowledge of literature, creative writing, linguistics, speech and technical communication to students within and outside of the department.

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The Department of English and Speech was formed in 1939 from the merger of the Department of English and the Department of Public Speaking. In 1971 its name changed to the Department of English.

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1939-present

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  • Department of English and Speech (1939-1971)

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Abstract

When Benjamin L. Whorf said that speech is the best show man ever puts on, he could have modified his statement by adding that personal names are the cleverest manifestations of that show. Many of us tend to accept our names as bestowed by our parents and exert little effort, if any, to understand their significance or even their literal meaning. The writer's wife has a rather rhythmical name, Mah-a, and many friends expressed their admiration of its musical tone. When asked about the meaning of her name, Maha will always answer "it means the eyes of the wild cow." It was a surprise to her husband to find out that Maha, in Arabic, means simply "the wild cow." Such instances of misunderstanding of one's own name lead the writer to assume a widespread lack of awareness on this topic.

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Sat Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 1977