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Monday, June 06, 2016

Arabic The Fastest Growing Language In The United States


From the New York Post (dated June 3, 2016):
Arabic is the fastest-growing language in American households — and that’s leading the US Census Bureau to explore the tricky task of adjusting its questionnaires to ­accommodate the language’s right-to-left script.

The bureau is using focus groups to explore possible changes to the 2020 census questionnaires for Arabic speakers who are not English-proficient, the Pew Research Center reported Friday.

Arabic is now the seventh-most commonly spoken non-English language in US households. An estimated 1.1 million people ages 5 and older speak Arabic at home, an increase of 29 percent between 2010 and 2014.

The number who speak Spanish at home has grown only 6 percent during the same period.

Of those who speak Arabic at home, 38 percent are not proficient in English, according to census estimates.

That’s just below the 42 percent English-proficiency rate among the 39.3 million US residents who speak Spanish at home.

The growth in Arabic is linked to continued immigration from Middle Eastern and North African countries, according to the Pew Research Center....
Read the rest HERE.

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

NYPost is likely stretching the truth quite a bit here. I do believe that average Americans can identify more Arabic words than Polish or Greek, but that does not mean they are fluent or can communicate in Arabic. For instance, I regularly refer to shariah, jihad, taqiyya, taharrush, muruna, etc. and even spend time explaining those terms online and in conversation. Always, any mention of these Arabic terms is in a cautionary and derogatory way - in no uncertain terms is it ever understood to be an expression of admiration or respect or fluency of/for such a despicable and deceitful language.

Monday, June 06, 2016 3:46:00 pm  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

Anonymous,
I have no idea what the stats are.

But Pew does have this information:

In 2020, census questionnaires may for the first time be offered in Arabic, now the fastest-growing language in the U.S. However, the Census Bureau faces a challenge not only in translating the language but also in adjusting the appearance of the questionnaire for those accustomed to reading and writing Arabic script....

More at the link.

Monday, June 06, 2016 4:02:00 pm  
Blogger Nicoenarg said...

Let me try to accommodate Arabic speakers a little too by writing from right to left:

!hsilgnE nrael dna uoY kcuF

Hope they feel all warm and fuzzy!

Monday, June 06, 2016 8:24:00 pm  

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