At Students’ Palestinian Culture Night, Focus is on Music, Food, Socializing

Those involved in the campus group Students for Justice in Palestine recently hosted a Palestinian Culture Night at the Student Center for Multicultural Life. Rather than addressing politics, the group featured music, food, and art from Palestine and the Middle East.

Lillian Gharios ’18, Mohamed Nur ’19, Simon Moushabeck ’16, and Hayat Fulli ’19 helped plan the night, arranging for live music and cooking up a feast. “We asked local Brunswick Arabs where they get their food, and Lillian and I asked our parents for recipes,” Moushabeck said.

After a trip to Makkah Food Market in Portland, the group spent the day preparing food such as tabouleh salad and fasoulia ou ruz. Tabouleh is a mix of parsley, mint, and scallion, and is laced with lemon juice and borghul. Fasoulia ou ruz is made of green beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, onions, and garlic, and is served with rice. “My mom used to cook Arabic food a lot growing up,” Moushabeck continued. “Many of the dishes are shared across Palestinian, Jordanian, Lebanese, and Syrian cultures.”

Moushabeck is also a member of Bowdoin’s Middle Eastern Music Ensemble, through which he knows local musicians Amos Libby and Duncan Hardy. Together they performed Arabic songs for the audience, with Libby playing the oud, Hardy the qanun, and Moushabeck the riq. “We wanted to do something positive for the campus, creating something accessible for people who haven’t engaged with SJP previously,” Moushabeck said. ​

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