Palestine,1948,and the Claims of Memory
Edited by Ahmad H. Sa'di , Leila Abu-Lughod
2007, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS, NEW YORK
AHMAD H. SA'DI is a senior lecturer in the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion
University of the Negev.
LEILA ABU-LUGHOD is professor of anthropology and gender studies at Columbia Univesity
"The catastrophic expulsion of the Palestinian people from their homeland
in 1948 is a historic injustice that demands the attention of the entire
world. Americans, Israelis, and Jews in every nation must especially give
heed to this astonishing collection of masterfully essays. Far from being
a melanchoy assemblage of anger and selfpity, this book is a major political
and scholarly achievment, rerflecting deeplu on the traumatic roots of
national identity, the role of memory and amnesia, history and mythical
narrative , legal doctrine and eyewitness testimony, women's experience,
men's businees, and lost places found again in song, story, and film. This
is essential reading for anyone who longs gor a just settlement to `the
question of Palestine`,the question of the Middle East, or, indeed, the
establishment of a world order of peace and justic."
-W.J.T.Mitchell, The University of Chicago, and
author of What Do Pictures Wnat?:The Lives and Loves and of Images
"These essays from a formidable, thoughtful, and incisive collection.
The analyses here engage trauma studies, the problem of the historical
construction of memory, and the ways politics seize upon and efface memory
for the purposes of establishment historio- graphical control over the
past. These writings are pervasively critical, in the best sense, demonstrating
at once the difficulty and the necessity of memory. At stake in the volume
is not only how to tell the story of this dispossession but also how to
tell the story of why this story has become untellable in so many quarters.
Here one finds lament, anguish, anger, and political demands for justice
in a set of analyses that are thoughtful, self-ref-
lective, and complex."
-Judith Butler, Maxine Elliot Professor, University of California at
NIHU Program: ISLAMIC AREA STUDIES
IAS Center at the University of Tokyo (TIAS)
Structural Change in Middle East Politics