How to talk to a woman in English in Saudi Arabia
Posted On July 24, 2021
The Saudis say they are committed to promoting the language, but many of the country’s citizens have difficulty pronouncing the word.
The Saudi language is spoken in more than 80 percent of the kingdom, where women are not allowed to drive and where it’s often difficult to get a job.
That’s why Saudi women often work outside the home and, in some cases, go to countries like Lebanon or Jordan.
Women are also not allowed on Saudi buses, and many don’t speak English.
In the country where Saudi Arabia is, the word is often referred to as khalifa, which means “servant of God.”
“If you’re an English speaker, the language is like your religion, it’s the only way to go to the mosque,” said Mohammed Al-Hassan, who runs a clothing store in the capital, Riyadh.
In one study, women were twice as likely as men to say they were learning English to get married. “
Al-Bashir has made language education a priority, but some Saudi women still find it difficult to learn the language.
In one study, women were twice as likely as men to say they were learning English to get married.
Saudi women are among the poorest in the world, and while women are generally paid a fair wage, there is little government support for women’s education.
So we have to try and do everything ourselves,” said Al-Shafeeb, who works as a translator for a family-run food distribution company. “
We don’t know where to start.
So we have to try and do everything ourselves,” said Al-Shafeeb, who works as a translator for a family-run food distribution company.
The women in her family are also struggling to learn English.
“I don’t understand a word, so I don’t want to learn,” said al-Shafaeeb.
“The whole world doesn’t understand what I’m saying.”
The family is working with an English-language school in Riyadh that offers tutoring.
Some women also study abroad in other countries, including the U.K. and France.
The U.S. has helped Saudi women learn English through scholarships and a program called English for All, which gives English classes to women in Saudi universities.
But even the best English tutors are not guaranteed a spot at the local university.
“There are so many students and teachers who just aren’t good in English,” said Amr al-Dhahab, a teacher at the university.
The school is not providing Arabic classes, but the program has made some students more fluent in English.
Al-Dahab said it has helped about two dozen students with English.
But he said that there is a shortage of qualified teachers in the kingdom.
“It’s a problem, because the students are very young, they are very poor and we are in the midst of a civil war,” he said.
This story was produced by The Associated Press under a partnership with NPR.