Dr Anna Bernard, ‘Resources for International Solidarity’, University of York, 25 February

Our very own co-investigator Dr Anna Bernard will be speaking at the University of York on Wednesday 25th February, on the topic of ‘Resources for International Solidarity: Palestine and South Africa on Camera’.

Anna is now based at King’s College London, but was previously a member of York’s Department of English and Related Literature, and we’re very pleased to welcome her back.

The talk is being hosted by York’s ‘Resistant Resources’ research strand, which developed from the Postcolonial Studies Association Postgraduate Conference held at York in July 2014.

Anna’s talk takes place in the Bowland Auditorium at 6pm. Attendance is free and all are welcome.

Her abstract is below:

Resources for International Solidarity: Palestine and South Africa on Camera

This paper compares the consciousness-raising strategies of anti-apartheid and Palestine solidarity documentaries released in the late 1970s and early ‘80s, including Some of the Palestinians (1976), You Have Struck a Rock! (1981), Occupied Palestine (1981), Who Are the Palestinians? (1983), and Witness to Apartheid (1986). These films emerge at a crucial juncture in the general shift, from the 1970s onward, from third-worldist and liberationist ideas of solidarity to civil society and humanitarian approaches. I argue that these films respond to the organizational needs of their particular moment by negotiating between these conflicting notions of what it means to be in solidarity, a strategy that remains in evidence in contemporary forms of international solidarity activism. They thus have important resonances with, and lessons for, cultural activism in our present moment.

If you’re unable to travel to York, Anna will be speaking on related themes at the University of Edinburgh Department of Islamic and Middle East Studies on Monday 2nd March, as part of their Lectures on Palestine 2015. The abstract for that talk can be found here.

Thanks to our network member Sarah Irving, who is part of a team curating the lectures, for this info.

Imagining Jerusalem – reflections on our first workshop

Our first meeting as a network took place last month in York. We were really pleased to see our early hopes of making cross-period and interdisciplinary connections realised in some fascinating and thought-provoking conversations during the two days of the workshop, and hugely grateful to all the members who were able to make it, especially those who travelled long distances to join us.

I’ve tried to condense some themes from the workshop in the following post, but if you were at the workshop, please do comment with any further recurrent topics that you noticed. If you weren’t, we’d love to hear the ideas that you think we could explore in future.

We began the first day with 5-minute presentations from members on their interest in Jerusalem – an exercise that worked surprisingly well, with everyone keeping to time and offering some thought-provoking questions and ideas! This quick-fire conversation uncovered some interesting points of connection between different periods, geographical contexts and disciplines, and highlighted exciting new areas of research.

Continue reading

Reza Aslan to speak in York on his new book ‘Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth’

Reza Aslan will be speaking in York on 26th March about his new book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth.

The talk is free and is being hosted by the Writers at York initiative at the York Medical Society.

You may recognise Aslan’s name from a clip which went viral last year, in which a Fox News presenter asked repeatedly why a Muslim would want to write a book about Jesus.

“My job as a scholar of religions with a PhD in the subject is to write about religions,” Aslan maintained, in response to the presenter’s persistent (and bizarre) line of questioning.

The talk promises to be a fascinating chance to hear Aslan’s own perspective on the argument of his book and the controversies it has generated. Not to be missed!

You can read more about the event and register to attend here.

First workshop of the Imagining Jerusalem network

Image of Clifford's Tower, York, by flickr user daylongThe first workshop of the Imagining Jerusalem network will take place at the University of York on 11-12 February 2014. This post contains information for attendees, including practical details, a schedule, and a reading list.

The venue is the Treehouse, which is in the Berrick Saul Building on the Heslington West campus. The nearest bus stop is by the university library. Buses 4 and 44 travel to this stop from York station – please allow 20-30 minutes for this journey, depending on traffic. There is an interactive campus map on the university website.

The schedule for the day can be downloaded here: Schedule.

The reading list can be downloaded here: Reading (updated).

Thank you to all of the members who proposed texts and images for discussion! We received a wonderful range of suggestions and we will be posting a separate list of all of these.