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Amine Bouchentouf

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Amine Bouchentouf is a native English, Arabic, and French speaker born and raised in Casablanca, Morocco. Amine has been teaching Arabic and lecturing about relations between America and the Arab world in his spare time for over 4 years and has offered classes and seminars for students at Middlebury College, the Council on Foreign Relations, and various schools across the United States. He runs and maintains the Web site www.al-baab.com (which means 'gateway' in Arabic).Amine graduated from Middlebury College and published his first book, Arabic: A Complete Course (Random House), soon after graduating college in order...

Lewis Glinert

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FALLING IN LOVE

They were big Hebrew letters, mounted on card. I still remember the day I first held them as a five year old in that old London Jewish school, and chanted their names -- like children since time immemorial -- aleph, beis, gimel, daled.

Overnight, it seemed, we were onto Torah, Mishnah, Gemara (no grammar, no dictionaries, just kind of by osmosis) . But nothing had prepared me for the surprise of my first trip to Israel. They were actually SPEAKING Hebrew. Me too. ('Buy us two bus tickets', my father whispered. 'shnei kartisim') . What, Hebrew has a word for bus and ticket?...