Learn Arabic Language/30
actually had a copy of this from back in 1991, when
Mark was shipped over to Iraq in the first Gulf War. We had
hoped that it would introduce the major phrases he
might need to be polite to the people he met. You
know the drill -- the basics of hello, goodbye, please,
thank you. They've repackaged the cassettes, but the
content appears to be the same for the latest version.
While this program offered the basics, it wasn't the
most user-friendly of language courses. Words are
not repeated, and it takes a few rehearings of the
tape before the sounds start to make sense. Part of
that can be attributed to the problems of learning
whole new sounds. The glottal stop sounds in Arabic (of which there are three, I think) are difficult to
understand for a beginner.
While the first section contains some useful phrases,
the choice of topics for a beginner are rather odd
-- vegetables? At the end, though, you have a basic
knowledge of standard arabic, but not much fluency.
Consider also that Arabic has many, many dialects.
Egyptian Arabic is quite different from the Gulf Arabic
spoken in Saudi Arabia, for example. This might be
a good introductory course, but if you want reasonable,
useful phrases for a traveler, definitely try the
In-flight Arabic CD from Living Language instead.