Modern Arabic language and culture, in recent years research more specifically on sociolinguistic issues of language in context; the interaction of standard Arabic and colloquial varieties, code switching and mixing in spoken - and written - registers, language attitudes and change in norms and practices, language ideology. I am member of the network International Association for Middle Arabic and Mixed Arabic (AIMA) as well as International Association for Arabic Dialectology (AIDA). I am a leading member of the international research team on the project The ideology and sociology of language change in the Arab world, funded by the Norwegian Research Council.
Secondly, the field of translation studies: theoretical and practical aspects of literary translation between Arabic and European languages, with a focus equally on cultural and linguistic issues. Since 2014, I am a member of the research team on the project Travelling Texts funded by the Faculty of Humanities
'Magistergrad' in Semitic studies, specialisation in Arabic (University of Oslo, 1980); visiting Fulbright scholar at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (1982-3); research assistant at Institute of Semitic studies, University of Oslo (1981-87). Dr. philos. 2005, dissertation Somewhere between order and chaos: Mixed styles in Egyptian Arabic. Ass. Professor of Arabic at the University of Oslo 1988, since 2006 full Professor.
The project consists of the studies of translations of literature to and from Arabic.