Tag Archives: Palestine

April 29

Palestine Dispatch: On the land

  I realized early on during the research for this book that I was spending a disproportionate time sitting in urban cafes talking to Palestinian poets as they hand-rolled and chain-smoked cigarettes. Since the conflict here is, arguably, first and foremost one about land, I worried I wasn’t seeing very much of it. I love […]

April 22

Palestine Dispatch: The writers of Haifa

I spent a few days this week in Haifa. I was interested in learning what it means to be a Palestinian writer in what most Palestinians call “48” – shorthand for the territory Palestine lost in 1948 to what became the state of Israel. I spoke to a few “48” writers during my visit last […]

Palestine Dispatch: The Poet of Sheikh Jarrah

Mohammed El Kurd’s mother used to read poems aloud to her husband in their house in the East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood. She sought his feedback before sending the poems to her editor at the newspaper she wrote for. When Mohammed was a child, he woke each morning to the sound of these tentative verses […]

Pay No Heed to the Rockets – a book in progress

It occurred to me today that I haven’t “officially” announced my current project, at least not here online. Those who follow this blog know that a few years ago I spent a month as the writer-in-residence at the Palestine Writing Workshop. I became interested in Palestinian literary culture at that time and published a long […]

October 02

Song of the Caged Bird

Next week, my digital book Song of the Caged Bird: Words as Resistance in Palestine will be released and available for download. Thanks to the editors and designers at Hazlitt for putting together such a handsome ebook. For more about Song of the Caged Bird, see my dedicated blog page. I also started a Facebook […]

September 07

“Turn off the heat, and pay no heed to the rockets.”

It is the last day of my short residency at the Banff Centre. I’ve been working on my project about Palestinians and their relationship to the written word. My trouble has been finding some sort of overarching theme, or themes, to link together the different stories I’ve found. I am getting closer. Regardless, my time […]

August 11

Palestine’s Stolen Books

As some of you may know, I am working on a new project about the Palestinian relationship to books and literature. When I was in Jerusalem last year, the owner of Educational Bookshop told me about a documentary titled The Great Book Robbery. The film, directed by Benny Brunner, tells the story of how Israeli authorities […]

“Palestinian inhibition in the Walled City of Bethlehem”

I’ve been the Writer-in-Residence in Birzeit for a couple weeks now, and have yet to post about my experiences here. I have plenty to write about – excellent sessions with the workshop participants, interviews with Palestinian circus artists, a tour of a library housing ancient texts in Jerusalem’s Old City, a visit to the grave […]

Wall: A Monologue

Writer David Hare has penned a marvelous and beautifully written essay about the West Bank Wall. The monologue was originally performed on stage at The Royal Court Theatre in London and now appears –  slightly shortened –  in the New York Review of Books. Find it here. (And thank you to Andrew for pointing this […]

A Nakba of Olives – an excerpt

[What follows is an excerpt from my Walls book-in-progress. This is from my chapter about the West Bank Wall called ‘A Nakba of Olives.’ Most of the chapter is about my time in the Palestinian village of Jayyous, and this excerpt is part of a longer account of an anti-Wall demonstration I observed there last […]