Golv wrote:I grew up in a predominantly Mizrahi town (mainly Moroccan, but all groups were represented).
I had Mizrahi teachers, Mizrahi neighbours and Mizrahi friends, and beside perhaps a marginal number of incredibly old people, I have never met a person who pronounced ח or ע.
Exactly my experience.
Never have I heard it from anybody under the age of about 60.
It's true that some Mizrahit singers do it in songs, but in interviews their accent is 100% standard Israeli. This includes people like Eyal Golan.
I feel like Margol does actually speak with pharyngeal ח and ע, but again - she's in her 70s. Her ח and ע are trademarked to her charm, I feel.
Even other Mizrahit singers like Shlomi Shabat do not use it (if I recall correctly); he has a "Mizrahi" accent, but not ח and ע; this coincides with my theory that it's more of a trait of Arabic speakers (Shlomi is a Turkish speaker).
I am so confused as to where all of these people are who supposedly pronounce ח and ע as pharyngeals. It is just so weird to me that these people are supposedly out there but I've never met or heard them.
On the durability of of ח and ע as opposed to other phonemes - As far as I know these sounds still characterized
the Hebrew of Sephardic Jews, whose pronunciation of Hebrew was considered prestigious.
Whether true, at least for a while ח and ע were selectively endorsed by radio while much of the Semitic phoneme inventory was ignored.
Up to the 60's it was possible to hear ח and ע on radio, and much later still by some radio presenters who took pride in their ability to reproduce Sephardic pronunciation (Dan Caner is a famous example).
By the time Hebrew television came to be, ח and ע were dropped as well.
Also what I thought.
eskandar wrote:But all of that was true of Hebrew as well for the Arabic-speaking Jews we're discussing here, at least until after 1948. The point is that for the first generation of Hebrew learners from Arabic-speaking backgrounds, both Hebrew and standard Arabic were at one point learned second languages you didn't speak in everyday life. They pronounced ق as [q] when reading Arabic, and may have pronounced ק as [q] when praying in Hebrew, so I think it's not so simple as to say that "they didn't have [q] in their spoken dialect so they didn't use it when speaking Hebrew." Again, to me it seems there's more to the story.
I just don't think q is part of how people are taught Hebrew at all. At least we know that ח and ע were traditionally pronounced pharyngeally; but I honestly doubt that 99% of Hebrew speakers know that ק was once pronounced with a q. It's like...not a thing.
[/quote]The question then becomes, why continue
letters according to your liturgical tradition (ע and ח) in a way that sets your speech apart from that of Hebrew-speaking Ashkenazim, but change
the way you pronounce other
letters (eg. ק and ט)? Especially considering that ط did not have the variations in pronunciation that ق had for Arabic-speakers.[/quote]
Again, I really feel like q is not a thing in Hebrew education. Of course, I can't go back in time and explain how it was taught in the early 20th century or whatever, but the fact that most Hebrew speakers know ח and ע but I don't think anyone knows about q really does say something to me.
ט is more complicated, because ת is kind of known to have a "th" pronunciation or "s" pronunciation amongst some old people, so ט is kind of differentiated. Unpopular opinion - ט is sometimes pronounced slightly differently to ת in Israeli Hebrew. I have no way to demonstrate this, but it's just what I've noticed.
Cool! Though I wouldn't be surprised if your friends reply with bog-standard Israeli Hebrew pronunciations, depending on the context in which you ask them. As far as I understand, native Hebrew speakers tend to use the pharyngeals in situations where they want to emphasize their Mizrahi identity.
Okay, only some of my friends have responded so far. The results were as I expected; nobody (Jews, that is) pronounces ח and ע pharyngeally if they are a native speaker unless they are very, very, very old. It's a stereotypically "grandparent" thing, even more than a "parent" thing. The verdict so far is that it does not exist in Israeli speech of younger people who are native speakers.
So they might not necessarily use the pharyngeals with you, but that wouldn't necessarily mean they never use them at all. Will be curious to see what kind of responses you get!
I asked about this, and this was kind of an awkward thing to ask and didn't get great responses. I mean, it's kind of weird to insinuate that they would specifically change their accent just because I'm in the room amongst them all. I have been to engagements, bar mitzvahs, circumcisions, birthdays, funerals and still never heard it, even amongst people you'd expect to hear it from.
The one time I have heard it was when I went to a friend's house for Friday night dinner. My friend's dad is a very, very elderly gentleman who migrated from Egypt as a young adult. He had a slight pharyngeal ע at times, but not ח. Again, he is a second language speaker of Hebrew.
He did have the trilled r though, which brings me to my next point. Trilled r is something that actually can still be heard among some speakers. It's very uncommon among native first language Hebrew speakers under the age of about 50, but it exists. It's most common among Russian speakers, but you can sometimes hear it on the radio among Ashkenazim and Mizrahim too.
In my honest experience, Israelis (Mizrahim) under the age of 40 have trouble pronouncing ע and ESPECIALLY ח pharyngeally, going with "kh" instead (khabibi, akhsan, khoobi, wakhad etc). I have seen this on TV many times and in real life, when I tell my Israeli friends about my Arab friends and they invariably laugh at me for saying A7mad and Mo7ammad, saying I sound hilarious and should pronounce it "normally" like "akhmed" and "mokhammad".
I've heard these pronunciations plenty of times in Tel Aviv, though exclusively from fairly old people. I was always listening actively for the pharyngeals since it's something that interests me, so I might have noticed it more often than people who aren't paying attention to phonetics.
HOLD ON - you went to Israeli
when? Sorry for getting sidetracked, but I DID NOT KNOW THIS! Omg! When?