Congratulations to Professor Ahmad Alqassas on Receiving Two Competitive Research Awards

Posted in News Story

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Ahmad Alqassas, an Associate Professor in the Department, on receiving the 2021 FLL Summer Academic Grant, and the 2021 Georgetown University Research Leave for his book project, Comparative Syntax of Modern Arabic. Below is the abstract of the book project:

Our current understanding of language builds on Aristotle’s dictum that it is “sound with meaning” and Humboldt’s conjecture that it is an infinite capacity in a finite system. The human language faculty is equipped with a combinatorial, recursive system (syntax) that computes meaning/concepts and externalizes it as signs (words/gestures). Languages vary in how they externalize meaning. Comparative syntax unearths principles, rules and operations that influence mapping from meaning to sign. Comparative syntax of closely related languages/dialects offers an opportunity to investigate this mapping in a controlled linguistic environment due to the shared linguistic features among the dialects. This project maps the micro-syntactic variation in major varieties of Arabic: Levantine, Gulf, Egyptian, Moroccan and Standard Arabic. Bridging the gap between the descriptive and theoretical approaches to comparative Arabic syntax, this project offers an up-to-date, descriptive, formal and analytical study of Arabic syntax, producing comparative data to independently verify claims about the internal grammar of speakers.

Congratulations Dr. Alqassas!