The Phenomenon of Diglossia between Eloquent Language and Vernacular Language in the Novel of "Dilshād, Sirat al-Ju' wal-Shaba'" by Bushrā Khalfān Based on Charles Ferguson's Theory

Article Type:
Research/Original Article (دارای رتبه معتبر)
The phenomenon of diglossia refers to the coexistence of two languages, colloquial and classical, within a society. The colloquial language is used in everyday interactions, while the classical language is reserved for formalities and written communication. The term "bilingualism" was first introduced by linguist Charles Ferguson, who borrowed it from French and applied it to English. In fictional discourse, diglossia is employed to create a sense of realism within the fictional society. For this research, the novel of "Dilshād, Sirat al-Juw' al-Shaba'" by Bushrā Khalfān was selected as the most suitable material for analysis using a descriptive and analytical approach. The findings, based on the four characteristics identified by Ferguson, indicated that language usage in the characters of the novel was determined by their roles and functions and the acquisition of the official language was a result of education. Furthermore, the study revealed that there were linguistic similarities between colloquial and classical words with the roots of words being derived from the classical language, while their form and pronunciation underwent changes in spoken conversation.
Language serves as a medium for expressing thoughts and communicating with others, allowing individuals to share their innermost ideas with the external world. It is through language that people understand and connect with one another. Language can be divided into two parts based on its usage: colloquial or dialectal language for everyday needs and interactions and formal language for official purposes. Linguists refer to the language used in everyday speech as colloquial or dialectal. The individuals proficient in both forms of language utilize them accordingly, employing the formal language for official situations and transactions within their educational community, while using the colloquial language in their daily lives as needed. The necessity of interacting with society often compels individuals to learn both forms of language. This distinction in language usage within a society and by individuals is known as diglossia. Additionally, individuals, who possess fluency in two completely different languages often due to the need to communicate with people outside their country, are referred to as bilingual.
In this research, the novel of "Dilshād, Sirat al-Ju' wal-Shaba'" was selected to explore the conflict between eloquent language and vernacular language as explained by Ferguson's theory. The following questions were addressed:
How does diglossia manifest in the world of the novel, particularly in "Dilshād, Sirat al-Ju' wal-Shaba'," resembling the dynamics observed in the real world?
How can the conflict between eloquent language and vernacular language be explained based on Ferguson's theory in the mentioned novel?

Materials and Methods
This research employed a descriptive analytical approach to examine the linguistic duality between colloquial and classical language in the above-mentioned novel. To accurately understand the meanings of slang terms, the author was contacted through Facebook for clarification. A comprehensive understanding of both languages was necessary to analyze the vernacular language in comparison to the eloquent language. To ensure proficiency in the desired accent used in the novel, a short course was undertaken prior to conducting the research. This course encompassed listening, written, and spoken aspects of the vernacular language. Extensive literature in this field was also consulted during the study.
The novel shed light on the existence of linguistic duality between colloquial and classical language, which was thoroughly investigated in the following features: 
Among the 9 characteristics mentioned by Ferguson, "Function" is considered the most significant both by Ferguson himself and his followers. This is because certain situations and occasions necessitate the use of spoken language alongside the official language. According to Ferguson, eloquent language is regarded as the superior language, while the vernacular language serves a specific function.
Ferguson posits that colloquial language is acquired naturally, unlike eloquence, which requires deliberate learning. Critics argue that the vernacular language is akin to one's mother tongue acquired effortlessly through interactions with family and community members.
The lexicons of eloquent language and vernacular language often share commonalities, primarily in terms of root forms and occasionally in form and structure. However, there are instances where these linguistic elements differ in appearance and even meaning.
Phonological variations exist between eloquent language and vernacular language, including differences in dialect and pronunciation. In this regard, attentive listening to the pronunciation of words becomes crucial. For instance, to study the Omani accent in eloquent language, it is necessary to compile words and carefully observe their pronunciation before conducting analysis.
Discussion of Results and
Diglossia as described by Charles Ferguson explores the usage of two languages within a society: the official written language and the colloquial language. In this article, 4 characteristics were selected from the 9 features identified by Ferguson and a novel was examined to determine its alignment with these characteristics. The chosen features included acquisition, lexicon, phonology, and results.
In the analyzed novel, the vernacular language was predominantly used in conversations, while the eloquent language was employed in non-conversational situations. The findings based on the selected characteristics indicated that the function of language usage was determined by the characters' roles and the acquisition of the official language was primarily through education.
Furthermore, the examination of word characteristics revealed that there were rooted similarities between colloquial and eloquent words. Additionally, the phonetic structures of words demonstrated that the roots of these words originated from the eloquent language.
In conclusion, the novel exemplified the existence of diglossia, showcasing the coexistence and distinct usage of colloquial and eloquent languages. The study confirmed the influence of function on language occupation within the characters of the novel with the official language being acquired through education. The analysis also highlighted the underlying similarities between colloquial and eloquent words, while emphasizing the influence of eloquent language on the phonetic structures of words.
Research in Arabic Language and Literature, Volume:15 Issue: 2, 2023
103 to 120  
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