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Arab Studies

p: 704-894-2041

Mailing Address

Box 6989
Davidson, NC 28035

Shipping Address

209 Ridge Road
Davidson, NC 28035

Student Activities

To enhance language and cultural learning, we offer a variety of college events and cross-cultural activities with the local Arabic-speaking community. There is also a large variety of student organizations on campus that appeal to the many interests of students.

Middle Eastern and North African Student Assocation (MENASA)

MENASA is a student run organization that focuses on addressing political and current event topics relating to all areas of the Middle East and north Africa.

Annual Syrian Artist Visit

Since 2011 the Arab Studies department has annually hosted Syrian artist Etab Hreib who has held calligraphy and art workshops for Davidson students as well as local elementary school students. She has also engaged with the local community through exhibitions of her work.

Cultural Activities with the Arab Community

Recent events have included lessons in Arabic cooking, Lebanese and Egyptian music, calligraphy, and we even gave the Egyptian stick dance a try.

Arab Events On Campus

We also frequently offer a variety of campus-wide events, including plays, art exhibits, lectures, and visits from international dignitaries.

Past Gatherings and Events


Students perform an Egyptian cultural dance at Davidson's fall 2013 International Festival.


Elinor Aishah Holland Conducts calligraphy Workshop

Elinor Aishah Holland, a premier Arabic calligrapher, teaches students about the long and beautiful tradition of calligraphy in Arab culture.

Students practicing calligraphy

Students hone their calligraphy skills after a two-hour workshop with Elinor Aishah Holland, an expert Arabic calligrapher.

Arab Studies Cooking Event with Syrian Community

A cooking lesson with Dunia Mohamed provides an opportunity to connect Davidson students with the Syrian community in Charlotte.

Arab Studies students share a meal with Syrian community

Arab Studies students and local Syrians share a home-cooked meal in the Spencer-Weinstein Center for Community and Justice.

Khaled Khalifa

Syrian Novelist and Screenwriter Khaled Khalifa discusses literature and the media in the midst of conflict.

Students showing their artwork

Etab Hreib with student artists who attended her workshop. Read more about Etab Hreib.

Students cooking

Students and Layan Anabtawi bake traditional Arabic bread.

Students learn basics of Arabic cooking

Lebanese caterer Ronda Lahoud teaches students basics of Arabic cooking.

Students singing during the International Festival
At International Day, led by Basma Botros, students sang "Shat al-Askandaria" by Lebanese singer Fairuz and served Egyptian style Falafal, Tahina, and bean soup at the Arabic Table.

Musicians performing

Lebanese musician Merwan al-Najjar, pictured here with Ronda Lahoud, plays popular Arab music for students. Egyptian musician Samah Basyli (not pictured) was also singing along.

Group enjoying music, Arabic coffee, and chocolate
Music, Arabic Coffee, and Chocolate: Lebanese artist Elie Bou Zeidan invites students to his studio/coffee shop in Cornelius.

Lebanese artist Elie Bou Zeidan

Lebanese artist, Elie Bou Zeidan, teaches Arabic students the basics of calligraphy.

Students perform the stick dance

Stick Dance: We are grateful to Prof. Basma Botros and her Egyptian community of Charlotte for teaching us dances from the Arab region throughout the semester in preparation for the international festival at Davidson. Watch the dance.

Students enjoy a Moroccan dinner and culture

Iftar Dinner: Noufissa Chouffani welcomes intermediate and advanced Arabic students into her home for an evening of Moroccan traditions and culture.

Syrian novelist Nihad Sirees visis the Arabic 202 class and talks with students

Syrian novelist Nihad Sirees talks with students in the Arabic 202 class.

Davidson in Damascus

Eight Davidson students traveled to Damascus during the summer of 2010 where they had intensive language training and volunteered with Palestinian refugees and handicapped children.

Syrian novelist Nihad Sirees poses with students in the Arabic 202 class

Arabic 202 students pose with Syrian novelist Nihad Sirees.

Past Events


Solitaire is a 45-minute monodrama in which one Egyptian woman explores the changing reality of Arab-Americans and Arabs living in the U.S. after the events of 9/11 and through the Egyptian revolution in Tahir Square. Solitaire is written, directed, and performed by Dalia Basiouny

Wafaa Bilal Art Exhibition

A multimedia exhibition featured works by the Iraqi American contemporary artist, Wafaa Bilal. On view were recreations of recent performance-based installations in which Bilal uses his own body-both literally and virtually-to interrogate widely held assumptions of Middle Eastern culture and people.

Helen Karam Art Exhibition

Karam, an acclaimed Lebanese artist whose paintings express concern for feminist issues and human rights, came to Davidson from Beirut to attend the opening of the exhibit of her artwork, "Loneliness in Red."

Voices of Middle Eastern Women

An interdisciplinary series of events, "Voices of Middle Eastern Women," prompted a reexamination of perceptions of Middle Eastern women.

Davidson in Damascus

Eight Davidson students who had studied one year of Elementary Arabic during the 2009-10 academic year traveled to Damascus during the summer of 2010. They took intensive intermediate classes at the university of Damascus and lived in the Old City with Syrian families. True to the giving spirit and leadership qualities fostered at Davidson college, in addition to their rigorous coursework, they volunteered with Palestinian refugees and handicapped children.