SOAS University of London

Department of Linguistics, School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics

Saba Tifooni

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  • Research


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Saba Tifooni
Thesis title:
A Cross-linguistic and Cross-cultural Investigation of Non-equivalent Emotions in Second Language Learning: Frustration and Excitement between English and Kuwaiti Arabic
Internal Supervisors

PhD Research

Do we feel and perceive emotions differently because of the languages we speak? This research aims to investigate the second language learning of emotion words that may be specific to their language and culture. In other words, the learning of emotion words in a second language where a single word translation and conceptual equivalent is not available in the first language. Through essentially investigating whether or not different cultures and languages label the same emotion differently according to their understandings of this same emotion, pedagogical implications might surface so as to aid the teaching of such emotions in the second language. This research bases the investigation in Kuwait where the first language is Kuwaiti Arabic and the second language is English, and is going to attempt to discover the variables that might affect the learning of English-specific emotion words. The different methodologies adopted for this study will not only look at the linguistic aspects of the emotion words in focus, but also looking into the non-linguistic factors such as facial expressions, and physiological reactions.  


  • Psycholinguistics
  • Language Acquisition