The fifth annual Arabic Culture Night this evening offers the Notre Dame community an opportunity to explore foreign cultures through student performances entirely in Arabic. Ghada Bualuan, director of the Undergraduate Studies of the Department of Classics and Program of Arabic Languages, said the event offers an important dimension to the study of Arabic beyond learning in the classroom. “We do teach culture in classrooms, but this is a small cultural experience to engage [students] with the culture so they can connect,” she said. “Culture is not only history and civilizations that they read in class, but it’s also the language they speak, the songs they sing, the poetry they recite.” This years’ program offers a special focus on the Arab Spring protests, she said. Senior Joe Dufour, president of Arabic Club, said multiple performances address this significant international development. “This year the biggest influence has been the Arab Spring,” he said. “We incorporated this major political, cultural and social event.” Dufour said his contribution, “The Dictator,” is a ten-minute play that addresses the revolutions of last year in a lighthearted manner. “The Arab Spring was very big this year, and we thought it would be relevant to do a satirical play on life under dictatorship,” he said. “It has a powerful message in addition to being comedic.” Bualuan said the poetry readings selected for tonight will also address the Arab Spring with controversial Syrian poetry. “It’s the poetry of revolution,” she said. One poem was banned in Syria because it spoke against the dictator, a harsh regime, and a lack of freedom of speech and expression,” she said. “The other poem is a cry calling Arabs to unite together.” Students participating in the event have taken leadership in writing, choreographing and film editing, involving themselves with the event more than ever before, Dufour said. Dufour also said solo and duet vocal performances will showcase the advanced language ability of students. “To have three students singing in Arabic, which is hard enough to speak, but to sing and do it well, is amazing,” he said. Bualuan said she hopes both students and families enjoy the event. “We try to reach out to the community because there is a large community of native Arabs in Michiana,” she said. Even those who do not speak Arabic or study the Middle East can appreciate tonight’s performances, Bualuan said. “Anyone who has any interest in the Middle East, is intrigued by the culture and politics of the Arab World or just wants to get a better sense of what it means to be Arab should come,” she said. “Arabs never cease to produce music, literature and other forms of culture infused with life experiences in time of prosperity and in hardship.” She said the interconnectedness of societies is best learned from immersion in another culture. “We all share the same humanity. We all seek happiness, peace and fulfillment,” Bualuan said. “We want people to connect with … what they’re feeling, facing and what challenges they have.” The Arabic Culture Night will begin tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the Jordan Auditorium at Mendoza. Admission is free.
Syracuse hasn’t lost a regular-season matchup with a Big East opponent in exactly two years. Since its April 16, 2011, loss to Georgetown, SU has won 17 consecutive games against Big East foes.SU won its last four Big East matchups in 2011, was 8-0 in conference play last season and holds a 5-0 record this year. With wins over Louisville and Cincinnati this past weekend, SU extended its longest conference winning streak ever.The No. 5 Orange (9-3, 5-0 Big East) has a break from its Big East schedule when it faces Cornell (7-4, 3-3 Ivy) on Tuesday at 4 p.m. in the Carrier Dome.“We just want to win every game (regardless of opponent),” SU head coach Gary Gait said. “Our goal is to show up, prepare mentally and physically, and take on our opponent, get the W and move on to the next one. If that ends up, we get through the Big East, that’s great. But our approach and our goal is to win every game.”SU’s early-season slate featured a heavy load of highly ranked nonconference opponents — including current No. 1 Maryland, No. 2 Northwestern, No. 4 Florida and No. 20 Virginia — but the team’s focus now is finishing its last season in the Big East with a bang. So far, it’s doing just that.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Orange has had the last three Big East Offensive Player of the Week award winners. Kayla Treanor won the week of April 8 and Alyssa Murray won the weeks of March 25 and April 1. The Orange has won nearly half of the offensive awards for the conference given so far this year.SU has also picked up the last two Defensive Player of the Week awards. Defender Becca Block won the award last week and goaltender Kelsey Richardson earned it this week.Two of the most recent conference victories came against Rutgers and Louisville, two teams on the verge of cracking the deBeer Women’s Media Poll top 20. SU squeaked by a lesser Rutgers opponent 10-8, but handled a better Louisville team 19-7. Cincinnati proved to be no match for the Orange on Sunday, as SU cruised to a 21-6 victory.The Orange now enters the tough part of its Big East schedule. In its five remaining games, it faces No. 7 Notre Dame, No. 8 Georgetown and No. 17 Loyola.“It’s really important,” Murray said. “You want to keep beating the teams that you’re going to wind up playing in the Big East tournament, come out hopefully with the No. 1 seed and come into the tournament with as much confidence as we can.”The team, from top to bottom, has found that confidence. Against Cincinnati, 15 different players scored.“It’s an honor to be a part of this team and to play with so many high-level players,” SU midfielder Erica Bodt said. “It’s been a great experience so far.”The journey is far from finished. Since the Big East began sponsoring women’s lacrosse in 2001, Syracuse has an all-time record of 63-16 in regular-season play. In five of the last six years, the team has finished in first place or tied for first place.SU is poised and in good position to win the conference again this year.“I think we’re very focused, we’ve really gotten into a groove,” Murray said. “I think we beat a very good team in Louisville and again, Cincinnati came out to play today. We’ve just continued to improve and get some chemistry going and we’re going to try to continue that for the rest of the season because this is when you really want to start peaking as a team, and I think we’re hitting that at the right time.” Comments Published on April 15, 2013 at 11:58 pm Contact Josh: email@example.com Facebook Twitter Google+