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Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic

Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic (revised edition) by Peter Abboud, Aman Attieh, Ernest McCarus, and Raji Rammuny

Primary Use: Textbook for moving from intermediate Arabic to advanced
Format:15 lessons, including preliminary questions, new vocabulary words, texts and grammatical lessons interspersed as well as various exercises
Pages:Unnumbered. Included grammar section: 105 pages.
Meant For:Intermediate to advanced


This book is a continuation of ‘The Orange Book,’ otherwise known as Elementary Modern Standard Arabic: Volume I. It is currently in the process of being revised; the current edition contains only 15 chapters of the original 20 intended.

The book is laid out in a curious way. Reading from right to left, the book begins with a table of contents in Arabic and then begins with the lessons 1 through 15. Reading from left to right in the traditional English manner, the book begins with a preface, a very bare table of contents, and then a grammar section. The lessons and the grammar section are separated by a green page. The table of contents at the beginning of the grammar section indicates the pages that correspond to the lessons on the other side of the book.

The exercises relating to grammar are found in the lessons and not in the grammar section. The pages in the lessons are numbered strangely, beginning with the chapter and then the page of the chapter, starting over again at page 1 when a new chapter is started. Halfway through the eleventh chapter, the pages start to use Arabic numerals without warning.

There is no particular order to the grammar presented, nor is there any index or list to indicate what one might find on the subsequent pages. Additionally, the typesetting makes it difficult to read, particularly the Arabic script.

How to Use It

In order to use this book to the fullest extent, one must already know the following:

  1. Arabic Script
  2. solid Arabic background at the intermediate level

This book has no key, no index, and no glossary. Therefore it is best used in a classroom setting under the guidance of a teacher.

The grammar section can be used one of two ways:

  1. Read as one works through the chapters
  2. Read from front to back by itself

It cannot be used as an effective reference tool as there is no index. The only thing the table of contents indicates is where the pages start that correspond to the chapters on the other side of the book.


Abboud, Peter, Aman Attieh, Ernest McCarus, and Raji Rammuny. Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic. 1st ed. 1971. Ann Arbor: Center for Middle Eastern and North African Studies, 2002.