Celebrating Our 140th Anniversary
  STRIKE! AUB Students Make History
The Italian Attack on Beirut. Part 2/4
Activism and the Y Generation
Exploring Tripoli
Exhibiting the Past: Priceless
Uncovering the History of Lebanon
Nature in the Design
The Finer Things in Life
A Journey from Geology to Iconography
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Spring 2006 Vol. IV, No. 3

From the Editors

Journeys Past and Present

News reports this winter of French students taking to the streets to protest new employment laws bring to mind the long tradition of student protests at AUB. It reminds us that students—a country’s educated youth—are often catalysts for change. Although activism may not seem to play such a key role for today’s younger generations, it can still be seen as a rite of passage for students in their life journeys. And that rite is alive and well at AUB.

It seemed fitting, therefore, that the historical section of this spring issue be dedicated to the history of activism at AUB. We feature stories about the sit-in of 1971 and the student takeover of College Hall, which is still very much alive in many people’s memories, as well as the 1954 protest against the Baghdad Pact, and the demonstrations that erupted in 1967 to protest the 1947 UN partition of Palestine. We also take a look at the role that activism plays in the lives of today’s AUB students.

In Journeys Past and Present, we wanted to look not only at how AUB has developed over the years, but also talk to our alumni and learn about how their own journeys have evolved. Lena Kelekian (BS ’81) opened her studio to us and described how, as a first-year student, she wanted to be a mineralogist. Today, as an artist and iconographer—who has a strong background in science—she is bringing new vibrancy to Byzantine techniques. Nina Jidejian (BA ’61, MA ’65) is a historian, archaeologist, and author whose life is defined by an insatiable thirst for knowledge. Lokman Meho (BA ’91, MA ’96) simply wanted to share his own very personal story of how AUB had changed his life.

You may be surprised to learn that much of the change that has taken place on campus is not the result of bulldozers and new buildings. In “Nature in the Design”, we discover that AUB has undergone quite a transformation since it was purchased by Daniel Bliss—and that evolution continues with a 21st-century approach to landscaping and eco-management. AUB, which has a long tradition of involvement in the arts, hasn’t had an art department in nearly 30 years—so we welcomed the opportunity to write about the new Department of Fine Arts and Art History in “The Finer Things in Life”. Not only is AUB examining Lebanon’s past through its archaeological sites (read about Tell el-Burak and Tell Kazel in “Uncovering the History of Lebanon”), it is also preserving the past for future generations in a newly renovated museum.

We ourselves are constantly learning about AUB, its alumni, Beirut, and Lebanon, and it is a pleasure to keep our readers updated as well. We hope that you enjoy the magazine. We welcome your ideas and feedback.

Ada H. Porter and Ibrahim Khoury
Coeditors, MainGate

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