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Religion, Ideology, and Nation-building in Jordanian Textbooks and Curricula for the Teaching of Arabic Language

Nijmi Edres


This article looks at Jordan as a case study to investigate how the link between the national and Islamic identity is constructed through textbooks and curricula for the teaching of Arabic language. The first section of the article introduces the reader to the relevance of Arabic language in historical discourses on Islam, Islamism and Arabic nationalism. Then, the article looks at the specific case of Jordan, providing an historical overview on how nationalism, religion, and religious pluralism played a part in Jordanian educational and political strategies. The following section specifically focuses on the use of the Arabic language in the Islamic and national perspectives, providing a diachronic comparison between the 2013 Arabic Language Curriculum and the 2019 General Frame for Jordanian Curricula, integrated by references to textbook content materials. The article identifies pragmatic needs behind the highlighted teaching policies and contextualizes the analyses in the broader Jordanian historical and political frameworks, pointing at the relevance of the Arabic language for the construction of identities in the contemporary Middle East and at its enduring politicization. Comparison between the 2013 and the 2019 documents shows relevant changes between past and present formulations, namely in the reduced emphasis on the link between language and religion.


Arabic language; education; Jordan; nationalism; religion.

Full Text:



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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7358/lcm-2021-002-edre

Copyright (©) 2022 Nijmi Edres – Editorial format and Graphical layout: copyright (©) LED Edizioni Universitarie

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Lingue Culture Mediazioni - Languages Cultures Mediation
Registered by Tribunale di Milano (27/11/2013 n. 380)
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Dipartimento di Lingue, Letterature, Culture e Mediazioni  
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