At NYU in Tel Aviv, you have the choice to take either Hebrew or Arabic as your language course. Both options help you with your understanding of the region of the world that you now find yourself in.
Hebrew – In addition to learning one of the oldest languages in the world, Hebrew will obviously help you get around and communicate with locals as well as enable you to read practical things like signs and menus. It is part of the experience of living in Israel to learn some Hebrew and the language itself unites people.
Arabic – Even though it is less commonly spoken in daily life, Arabic is one of the official languages of Israel. It is equally interesting and is on par with Hebrew when it comes to its history. Arabic will also help you understand a different facet of the goings on of the Middle East. There are many opportunities of speaking Arabic with people from your local baker in Yafo to guest speakers that you will meet on the program.
The courses offered vary from semester to semester but you can be sure to find many different Politics classes during your semester abroad. They are very helpful in understanding the dynamics of the region not only between countries but also between different actors in the Middle East as well as influence from outside forces.
Some courses offered previously included:
– Diplomacy and Negotiation: the course was aimed to learn about the art of diplomacy and negotiation and every conflict resolution method in between. This goal was achieved through theory learning and case-studies of the Israeli-Palestinian and the Cyprus conflict for example.
– Religion, Politics and State: the goal of this course was to explore the issue of the mingling of religion and politics, or lack thereof. Theory was crucial when exploring case studies and visualizing films that put the arguments of an author or theory in perspective.
– The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: this course describes its purpose in its title. It gives an overview of the conflict from different points of view and often focused on the humanitarian and social impact of the conflict set to the background of politics.
– Mercedes Moya