The Arabic Minor in Arabic Studies is designed for students interested in developing an expertise in the Arab World as a complement to their disciplinary major. Students who receive an Arabic Studies Minor will have a basic ability to use Standard Arabic as an informed understanding of the issues pertinent to the Arab world and knowledge of Arabic culture and language. For more information about our minor and its requirements, click on the Fall 2017 brochure for more information.
Regardless of whether or not students choose to complete our Minor in Arabic Studies there are numerous classes from which students of Arabic can benefit in over six different UIUC departments. Students of Arabic who take classes which examine the Arab World from anthropological, political science and religious studies frameworks will gain a unique perspective of the context in which Arabic is spoken that extends far beyond the classroom.
Use the tabs below to explore the many courses about the Arab World that are offered across various departments.
If you are looking for an opportunity to learn or drastically improve your Arabic language skills over the summer consider joining us for the Summer Institute for Languages of the Muslim World hosted on UIUC campus. For more information visit silmw.linguistics.illinois.edu
3 hours. May be repeated
This is an introductory course in the Arabic Program. The purpose of Arabic 201 is to familiarize students with the Arabic writing and sound systems and to enable them to develop basic proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. At the end of the semester, students should be able to perform simple tasks such as: recognize and produce Arabic sounds, write Arabic letters in different word positions correctly, read short and simple texts and understand their content, initiate and sustain a simple conversation on a number of topics, and provide information about certain aspects of Arabic culture. 5 hours.
This is an introductory course in the Arabic Program. Students are expected to finish Arabic 201 before enrolling in this course. The purpose of Arabic 202 is to enhance studentsâ€™ knowledge of the basic grammar of standard Arabic and to expand their reading, writing, speaking and listening abilities. At the end of the semester, students should be able to perform the following tasks: understand, form, and use many of the basic sentence structures of Modern Standard Arabic, initiate and sustain a simple conversation on a number of topics, read simple texts and understand their main ideas, guess the meaning of new words from the context, write simple passages about familiar topics, provide information about certain aspects of Arabic culture. 5 hours.
This course will focus on one of the major spoken Arabic dialects in the Arab world. Students will be exposed to the variation between the dialect and Modern Standard Arabic in terms of vocabularly, grammar, and morphology. Students will develop conversational competency in the dialect, as well as general comprehension. Students will also be exposed to elements of the specific culture in which the dialect is spoken. Students must have completed ARAB 201 and ARAB 202 in order to enroll in this course. 4 hours
Previous dialects that have been offered are Levantine (Fall 2012), and Moroccan (Fall 2013).
Continuation of Arabic 210. 4 hours
This is an intermediate course in the Arabic Program. Students are expected to finish Arabic 201 and 202 before enrolling in this course. The purpose of Arabic 403 is to increase the studentsâ€™ knowledge of the core grammar of Modern Standard Arabic and to expand their vocabulary for both reading and writing. A special emphasis is put on studentsâ€™ ability to communicate verbally with others in life-like situations. At the end of the semester, students should be able to perform the following tasks: understand the general meaning of simple but authentic texts, conversations, and other written or oral materials, express themselves in writing and speaking with some ease and with complex sentences, provide information about certain aspects of Arabic culture. 4 hours.
This is an Intermediate course in the Arabic Program. Students are expected to finish Arabic 403 before enrolling in this course. The purpose of Arabic 404 is to add to the studentsâ€™ knowledge of the core grammar of Modern Standard Arabic they learned in Arabic 403 and to develop their vocabulary for both speaking and writing. At the end of the semester, students should be able to perform the following tasks: understand the general meaning of more complicated and authentic texts, conversations, and other written or oral materials, express themselves in a certain degree of fluency in writing and speaking with complex sentences, provide in depth information about certain aspects of Arabic culture. 4 hours
This is an advanced course in the Arabic Program. Students are expected to finish the above four Arabic courses before enrolling in this course. The purpose of this course is for the students to develop functional proficiency in Standard Arabic with special emphasis on reading and writing skills. In addition, the course aims to equip students with extensive vocabulary repertoire as well as the grammatical structures of Standard Arabic. Cultural background knowledge is viewed as particularly important to achieve competence in the target language, and therefore the course includes several cultural and historical readings and discussions. It is highly recommended and encouraged that students learn how to use Arabic-English dictionaries to achieve learnerâ€™s autonomy in the future. 3 hours
This is an advanced course in the Arabic Program. Students are expected to finish Arabic 405 before enrolling in this course. The purpose of Arabic 406 is to extend studentsâ€™ knowledge of Arabic grammar and vocabulary and to give them the opportunity to deal with texts they might encounter in the media and other communication channels. The course delves more deeply into the Arabic culture, exploring in more depth different aspects of Arabic daily life. The themes and texts are selected based on their linguistic relevance and appropriateness to the studentsâ€™ language proficiency levels. 3 hours.
Selected readings from Modern Standard Arabic authors, with a focus on novels, plays, and basic poetry illustrative of Arab cultural issues and advanced level MSA grammar, as well as development of expository writing skills. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: Arabic 406.
Continuation of Arabic 407 with increased emphasis on the reading and comprehension of literary texts exemplified in advanced level novels, plays, and poetry, as well as on advanced mastery of expository writing skills. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: Arabic 407.
Introduction to Modern Standard Arabic in the professions as documented in selected newspapers, educational radio and TV programs, works of fiction, biographies, anthologies, and professional journals. Students will be introduced to argumentative writing in MSA, expected to make oral presentations, and to write a research paper in their field. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: Arabic 408.
Continuation of Arabic 409 with increased emphasis on the development of comprehension and writing of professional language. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: Arabic 409.
Introduction to Arabic business language as used in basic business settings, including commercial advertisement and business correspondence. Emphasizes language skills that will enable students to conduct job searches and locate job vacancies that match their fields of study and their interests. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. May be repeated in separate terms if topics vary to a maximum of 6 undergraduate hours or 8 graduate hours. Prerequisite: ARAB 405 or consent of instructor.
This is an introductory translation course that introduces students to translation methodolgy and the profession of translation, with particular emphassis on the development of Arabic-to-English translation techniques and the acquisition of related knowledge above and beyond language skills. Students will be exposed to a variety of text types from different Arabic-speaking countries and learn to produce quality, professional translations and apply effective strategies to deal with the challenges of fully preserving the meaning of the original text while conveying the appropriate tone (style/register) and paying attention to grammar, mechanics, and audience-specific needs. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: advanced standing in Arabic.
In-depth survey of comparative issues in Semitic Linguistics, with particular emphasis on morphology, syntax, phonology and language change from the perspectives of current linguistic theories. Same as AFST 469.
Course is identical to RLST 214 except for the additional writing component. See RLST 214.
History of Islamic thought from the time of Muhammad to the present, including the prophethood of Muhammad, the Qur'an, theology and law, mysticism and philosophy, sectarian movements, modernism and legal reform, and contemporary resurgence.
Introduction to the Qur'an (Koran), the holy scripture of Islam, examining its major doctrines, thematic development, literary style, and its relationship to pre-Qur'anic, especially Biblical, traditions. Special attention is given to various methods Muslims have used to interpret the Qur'an. Same as CWL 223.
Examines mystical concepts and practices in Islam through the ages, through the lives and writings of important mystics and Sufi holy men and women, as well as the integration of mysticism and the Sufi Orders into Muslim society and Islamic orthodoxy. No knowledge of Islam or foreign language is required..
Examination of gender ideologies and social realities affecting the lives of women in various Muslim countries. Same as ANTH 403, GLBL 403, GWS 403, and HIST 434.
Examines the role of Islam in contemporary politics, the contemporary resurgence of Islam, and the articulation of Islamic approaches to the new economic order, nationalism, and the changing role of women. Same as PS 408.
Same as ANTH 402, and ASST 402. See ANTH 402.
Same as ANTH 468. See ANTH 468.
Explores the complexity of Muslim-Christian interactions since early Islam, including theological and philosophical exchanges, debates, polemics, interfaith dialogue, perceptions of each other, Muslim minorities in the West, and Christian minorities in the Muslim world, and the relationship of religion to culture.
Same as SAME (South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies) 133. Introduction to the world of Islam. Islamic thought and traditional institutions; historical expansion and evolution of the Islamic world in pre-modern and modern times; state, society and cultures in different world regions; gender issues; artistic expression; family life; language and identity; literary expression; issues in economic development; human rights; Christian-Muslim relations; debates over Sharia vs. secular law.
Introduction to fourteen centuries of Middle East history from the rise of Islam to modern times. Examines the development of Islamic thought, and of religious, social, and political institutions, as well as the transformations of the 19th and 20th centuries, in the area consisting of Egypt, the Fertile Crescent, Arabia, Turkey, and Iran.
Examines the main themes of Palestinian history since 1800. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict frames the latter part of this history, but it is not the central issue. The focus of the course is Palestinian political, social, and cultural history.
Political, social, cultural, and ideological developments in Egypt, Arabia, the Fertile Crescent, Iran and Turkey from the mid 16th century to the eve of World War I. Premodern society and institutions, the question of "decline" and "awakening", encounters with Europe and self-strengthening reforms, relations between Muslims, Christians, and Jews, the role of women and the family, class formation, and religion and nationalism. Same as JS 335.
Same as ANTH 403, GLBL 403, GWS 403, and RLST 403. See RLST 403.
Political, social, cultural, and ideological developments in Egypt, Arabia, the Fertile Crescent, Iran and Turkey from the mid 16th century to the eve of World War I. Premodern society and institutions, the question of "decline" and "awakening", encounters with Europe and self-strengthening reforms, relations between Muslims, Christians, and Jews, the role of women and the family, and class formations.
Political and ideological developments in Egypt, Arabia, the Fertile Crescent (including Israel), Iran, and Turkey from World War I to the present, with emphasis on the period to the 1960s; economic, social, and cultural trends in the region also addressed.
Examines the twentieth-century history of Egypt, emphasizing the internal social, political, economic, and ideological developments, with attention to Egypt's role in regional and international politics. Readings include novels and short stories to introduce students to modern Egyptian culture. Same as AFST 437.
Covers, in depth, major problems of specific periods and areas and the relevant literature of Near and Middle Eastern History, which will vary from term to term.
Investigates research topics in Near and Middle Eastern history in accordance with students' needs. Topics may vary from term to term. Students will prepare oral and written reports.
Analyzes the transformation of Middle Eastern society from Morocco to Iran, as case studies in political modernization. The politics of the area are studied with special reference to causes and character of modernization, role of leadership, ideologies and institutions, methods and theories for analyzing political systems undergoing fundamental transformation, and implications for U. S. policy. Same as ASST 347.
Same as RLST 408. See RLST 408.
Interdisciplinary introduction to Africa dealing with basic themes and problems in the politics, economics, sociology, anthropology, and history of Africa. Same as ANTH 222, PS 242, and SOC 222.
Same as HIST 438. See HIST 438.
Same as LING 469. See LING 469.
Organized around major cultural/historical/religious topics presented in literature through Western and Islamic eyes, beginning with the Crusades and proceeding into the present. This course will examine stereotypes, fantasies, identifications and political opportunism promoted by the encounter between the West and the Islamic World. Prerequisite:CWL 241 and CWL 242 or one year of college literature. This course satisfies the General Education Criteria for: UIUC: Literature and the Arts
Same as RLST 223. See RLST 223.
Studies in Arabic literature and culture of various genres, periods, and regions. Graduate students are encouraged to read the texts in the original language. 3 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. May be repeated in the same semester to a maximum of 6 undergraduate hours or 8 graduate hours if topics vary; May be repeated in separate semesters to a maximum of 12 undergraduate hours or 16 graduate hours if topics vary. Prerequisite: One year of college literature or consent of instructor.
Anthropological approach to transnational Islam, focusing on its various expressions in Europe and the United States, particularly since World War II. Same as ASST 402, and RLST 409.
Same as GLBL 403, GWS 403, HIST 434, and RLST 403. See RLST 403.
Course will consider religious acts, beliefs and experiences in Africa as they relate to politics, cosmology, social structure, gender norms and markers, aesthetics and performance, and illness and healing, among other factors. Religious traditions that first originated in sub-Saharan Africa will be emphasized, but some consideration will also be given to local African experiences of Christianity and Islam. Same as RLST 468.