An Investigation of Feminine Personal Names in Beni Sakhr Tribe of Jordan: A Sociolinguistic Study

Atef Fleih Aljbour, Fawwaz Al-Abed Al-Haq


The research paper examined the feminine personal names within Beni Sakhr tribe, which inhabits the Jordanian central desert with the aim of pointing out the sociolinguistic implications of the names, and the differences in naming practices throughout three generations (grandmothers, mothers. daughters). For this reason, 300 names of female school students in the elementary stage were obtained from Almwaqqar Directorate of Education alongside their mothers and grandmothers. Analysis of a total number of 900 names, divided equally between the three categories, revealed that 69 % of the grandmothers' names are Bedouin-exclusive names opposed to (9%) and only (2%) of the mothers and daughters’ names respectively. Grandmothers’ names derive mainly from the needs of the dwellers of desert regions, the severe conditions they experienced, and the social values of the Jordanian nomadic tribes. Only 9 (3%) names of a religious background are identified in this category compared to 42 (14%) in the mothers’ names and 25 (8.3%) in the daughters’ names. In general, the paper finds evidence to suggest that the change in the lifestyle of Beni Sakhr tribe does influence the naming practice in this community.

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