[Marxism] "The Internationale" in Arabic

Thomas Bias tgbias at ptd.net
Wed Dec 12 21:16:34 MST 2012

If there are any Arabic-speaking comrades on this mailing list, I need your
help. As you may know 2013 is the centennial year of the Paterson, NJ, silk
strike, and the American Labor Museum in Haledon, NJ, which is in the house
where the strike committee actually met, is planning a commemoration in
January. My singing group, the NJSIUC Solidarity Singers, is planning to
sing "The Internationale": we're going to do the first stanza and refrain in
the original French, close with the first stanza and refrain in the Charles
Kerr English translation (the one we all know), and then in between do the
refrain in the languages that the strikers would have spoken: Italian,
Dutch, German, Yiddish, and, yes, Arabic. There were immigrants from Syria
working in the silk mills even a hundred years ago. Of course, today
Paterson and nearby communities (Clifton, Passaic, Boonton) have the second
largest Arab immigrant community in the United States (after Dearborn, MI).
I have found an Arabic translation of the lyrics (on Angelfire), but it
doesn't sound like the YouTube recordings that I've heard. And I'm having
trouble squaring the lyrics that I saw written out with the music: I'll need
to transliterate it for the other members of the Solidarity Singers, who are
unaccustomed to singing in languages other than English, Spanish, or
occasionally Yiddish. So if anyone can point me in the direction of an
authoritative written-out lyric of "The Internationale" in Arabic, and to a
recording that's using those lyrics it would be greatly appreciated. I can
read the Arabic script, though I'm not even close to fluent (I've taken a
one-semester introductory course at community college). Shukran and
solidarity! Tom

More information about the Marxism mailing list