A new collection, Jerusalem Interrupted: Modernity and Colonial Transformation, 1917-present, edited by Lena Jayyusi and published by Interlink, examines the Arab history of the city.
The volume includes contributions from scholars Issam Nassar, Sandy Sufian, and Nadia Abu El-Haj, among others, and covers a wide range of topics, such as broadcasting, music, and colonial medicine.From Jayyusi in the Introduction:
The history of colonization is always the history of suppression of various texts and voices, as well as ways of being, and the reinscription into discourse and narrative of an alternate set of histories that are predicated on that suppression. ‘Absence’ is not merely docile, it is a produced deficit in knowledge, a kind of negative symbolic capital, a weight and value accruing to that which colonizes empty space. The silenced past needs to speak. The silenced past needs also to be reconnected with the vocal present, in order to speak fully and to play a critical role in subverting the silences planned in the present and the further transformations these silences would enable.
It looks like a fascinating book and there are certainly a few chapters I’ve bookmarked as ‘to read’.
Jerusalem Interrupted forms part of a small but growing field of studies on the city focusing on Arab culture and society in the Ottoman and Mandate periods, often relying on archives such as Islamic court documents, municipal council records, and family papers to reconstruct the details of everyday life.
This new collection sits alongside works by writers including Salim Tamari and most recently, Menachem Klein (whose book was reviewed here by British-Palestinian novelist Selma Dabbagh), as well as the work of Imagining Jerusalem network members Roberto Mazza and Jacob Norris.
Thanks to Roberto Mazza for drawing our attention to this book on Twitter.
Jerusalem Art History Journal is a new undergraduate eJournal, edited by Imagining Jerusalem network member Loren Lerner. The inaugural issue can be downloaded here.
The issue features a selection of essays produced by students of Loren’s course ‘City of Jerusalem: Ideas and Images’, which she teaches in the Department of Art History at Concordia University in Montreal.
From the issue Introduction:
‘[City of Jerusalem: Ideas and Images] considers different attachments to Jerusalem through visual perceptions and artistic representations at the religious, social, and political levels. Its focus is on the multifaceted narratives, allegiances, and ideas of the city’s history covering ancient times, the Roman and Byzantine periods, the Arab, Crusader, and Mamluk periods, and the years under Ottoman, British Mandate, Jordan/Israeli, and Israeli rule. Of central importance is the visual imagery of the real and imagined Jerusalem in the art and architecture created by different communities over thousands of years.’
The essays explore the art, architecture, archaeological sites, and urban spaces of Jerusalem from a range of eras. Others discuss works of art created by the students themselves, in which they produced their own visual response to the city.
Loren hopes that the journal will become a student-run, peer-reviewed publication, open to all universities. Contributions to the next issue (in English or French) are currently invited, and should be sent to loren.lerner[at]sympatico.ca by 1 April 2015. The Call for Papers can be downloaded here.
Our network member Dr Anna Bernard, Lecturer in English Literature at King’s College London, recently published her first book, Rhetorics of Belonging: Nation, Narration and Israel/Palestine (Liverpool University Press, 2013).
The book ‘examines the diverse ways in which Palestinian and Israeli writers have responded to the expectation that their work will “narrate” the nation, invigorating critical debates about the political and artistic value of national narration as a literary practice.’ It explores the works of a range of Palestinian and Israeli writers, including Edward Said, Amos Oz, Mourid Barghouti, Orly Castel-Bloom, Sahar Khalifeh, and Anton Shammas.
Another of our members, Sarah Irving, PhD Candidate at the University of Edinburgh, recently reviewed Anna’s book for Electronic Intifada. You can read Sarah’s review here.
Network member Craig Larkin (King’s College London) has recently co-authored a new monograph, The Struggle for Jerusalem’s Holy Places.
If you’re in London, you can join Craig for the book launch and a drinks reception on Tuesday 28th January at 6.30pm, in the Staff Common Room, Second floor, King’s Building, Strand Campus.
Download the flyer here.