How to Say “Post-” in Arabic

مَرْحَلة

root: ر-ح-ل / noun / plural: مَراحِل / definition: stage, phase


Don’t get confused, it’s not البريد (the post, mail) that we’re talking about this week—we’re actually looking at how to create words with the post- prefix, such as: postcolonial, postmodern, post-pandemic, etc.

Forming this type of construction, I’m sure you’ll be relieved to hear, is just about as easy as it is in English:

post- = ما بَعد


Let’s take a look at some examples:

ما بعد الاستعماريّة

postcolonialism


أدب ما بعد الاستعمار

postcolonial literature

Note that when we have a post- adjective describing a noun in English, this translates into an إضافة in Arabic (the preceding noun forms an إضافة with the ما).

So أدب in the example above can’t have الـ because it’s the first term in the إضافة. The phrase literally translates as “the literature of that which is after colonisation”.


ما بعد الحداثة

postmodern


اكتئاب ما بعد الولادة

postpartum depression


ما بعد الانتخابات

post-election


ما بعد الصراع

post-conflict


اضطراب ما بعد الصدمة

post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)


These next two examples are from this article (and you can find out why I think that website is great for language learners here!):


حزم تعافي ما بعد الجائحة

post-pandemic recovery packages


في مرحلة ما بعد الجائحة

in the post-pandemic stage


You can find more of these cool little phrases (which make you sound way more fluent, by the way) in the small but useful phrases series.

That’s all for now, مع السلامة!



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