Rather than focusing on the differences between cultures, two USC students decided to highlight the similarities in a recent YouTube video that was viewed over 12 million times within its first week online.

Barbara Estrada and Taylor Villanueva are both juniors in broadcast journalism at the University of Southern California. Villanueva, whose parents are Mexican and Lebanese, says she grew up seeing similarities between Arabic and Spanish, and she explained, "I just wanted to open people’s minds to help them realize that the two cultures aren’t that different." 

Estrada, a Cuban-American who grew up in Miami, became interested in the project when she realized she could recognize some of the words her roommate spoke in Arabic.

Together, the two students produced a video in which a Spanish speaker and an Arabic speaker compare words from the two languages. Check out some of the similarities in the video below!

The video cites the Moor occupation of Spain from the 700s to 1100s A.D. as the likely source of the language similarities. 

So far, the video received over 12 million views on Facebook, and it is the most-viewed video on the school's YouTube page.

What did you think? Did the similarities surprise you?