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Home »» Moroccan Of The Month

Aziz Abbassi  [ August, 2005 ]
Aziz Abbassi Aziz Abbassi was born during a snow storm in Sefrou, Cherry Capital of Morocco, a few years before the Big Flood. He spent part of his childhood there and later moved to Rabat where he attended, and graduated from, Lycee  Moulay Youssef, then the "Faculte des Lettres" and the "Ecole Normale  Superieure". He subsequently taught English at the American Language Center  in Rabat and Casablanca, as well as at Lycee Lahlou, College l'Hermitage,  Royal Air Maroc, and "Ghbila City Prison" in Casablanca. He first came to  the US as a Fulbright grantee in 1970, spending a summer program in  Linguistics at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. The  following summer, he was recruited as a language teacher and consultant for  the University of Texas in Casablanca. Lured into the world of linguistics  by a certain Mike Brame he came back to the States and entered the Foreign Language Eduation Center at the University of Texas at Austin and later  received both the MA and the PhD degrees in Foreign Language Education and Sociolinguistics.

His academic and educational management career spans about thirty five years  on three continents. In addition to his teaching experience (in Morocco,the  UK and the US) he also directed a small network of English language  institutes all based on, and in association with, several US institutions of  higher learning: the University of Redlands in California, the University of  Nevada at Reno, the University of Texas-Dexter House at Austin, Central  Texas College, in Killeen, Pueblo Community College & Denver's  Loretto  Heights College in Colorado, and Gulf Coast Community College in Panama  City, Flordia. He currently works for the Defense Language Institute, in  Monterey California, training faculty, teaching Arabic, French, English, and  Translation & Interpretation. Professionally, he has been involved in the  TESOL, NAFSA, MESA and AIMS organizations.  His major interests at present  are Arabic dialectology and the issue of using the vernaculars in education  (ex. Morocco and the  use of Amazigh  and/or Darija in public and private schools).

He introduced renowned Moroccan scholar and philosopher Mohammed Abed al-Jabri to American academic circles by translating his "Introduction a la  critique de la raison arabe" into English (from a French summary of the  Arabic language trilogy known as "naqd  al-`aql  al-`arabi" ), published in  1999 by the University of Texas Press. Aziz Abbassi is also an occasional  writer of prose and poetry. His first (bio-fiction) short story, "Theft in  Broad Daylight" appeared in a collection edited by Elizabeth W. Fernea  titled "Remembering Childhood in the Middle East", UT Press 2002. Upcoming  for publication, time-permitting, is a collection of stories titled: "A  Mid-Atlas Winter Daydream".

He was former vice president of the Moroccan Experiment in International Living, in Rabat, was a Peace Corps trainer at one point and was a founder and former president of the USA-wide Moroccan American National Association,  incorporated and registered in Washington DC (1985).

Contact him at:

[email protected]



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