This article deals with the sociolect of native Hebrew speakers, born in Israel, whose (distant) origin is in the Jewish communities of the Arab east and west. The article reviews several terms that have been used to refer to this sociolect but argues that none of these terms accurately describes either the sociolect or its speakers. Since the majority of the Israelis who speak this sociolect are traditional (masoratiyim) in terms of their religious identity, I propose to refer to this sociolect as Traditional-Mizrahi Hebrew, which occupies an intermediate place between 'Jewish Hebrew' and 'Israeli Hebrew'. This term has the advantage of accurately reflecting the contemporary Israeli reality. The second part of the article provides detailed evidence for the suitability of this term. It reviews various linguistic characteristics of this sociolect that reflect its affinity to the Jewish tradition as it is perceived by the Jewish communities of the Muslim countries.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cultural Studies
- Religious studies
- Literature and Literary Theory