Art, Music & Culture

Palestinian museum exhibition "lost" by American Airport Security

On 1 November 2003 the Palestinian Costume Archive’s exhibition, Symbolic defiance: Palestinian costume and embroidery since 1948, was taken for a security check/ x-ray at Los Angeles airport’s Terminal 4 and has not been seen since. All attempts by the Palestine Costume Archive, Qantas, Alaskan Airlines and MESA to locate the exhibition over the last three weeks failed and the search has been abandoned. The “loss” of this exhibition raises major concerns for all museums and curators worldwide currently touring Middle Eastern exhibitions in the United States. 

Israel's Supreme Court lifts ban on "Jenin, Jenin"

Today, Israel�s Supreme Court lifted a ban on Mohammed Bakri�s documentary �Jenin, Jenin�, ruling that Israel�s film board, also known as the film censorship board, had overstepped the red lines drawn by the freedom of expression. �Jenin, Jenin� was screened three times in Israel before it was banned. According to the court the board�s decision infringes on freedom of expression �above and beyond what is necessary.� Now that the ban on the film is lifted, the first screening has been set on December 8 at the Tel Aviv Cinemateque. 

Said's work towards artistic cooperation celebrated in music performance memorial

A concert memorial celebrating the life and work of Edward Said, performed by Daniel Barenboim and other musicians involved with their West-Eastern Divan workshop, which gathers outstanding young musicians from Israel and Arab countries, and puts them together into one orchestra, demonstrated that music offers a space for fundamental human connection. Baremboim also emphasized to the audience that they must carry on Said’s fight for social justice in Palestine and elsewhere. Maureen Clare Murphy reports. 

Art review: Mind, Body and Soul of Palestine - A Photo Journal Exhibit

In Mind, Body and Soul of Palestine: A Photo Journal Exhibit, time, imagery, and stereotype are challenged and contradicted. Indeed, some of the imagery in the photographs contradict each other, causing the viewer to reconsider what they know about this country called Palestine that is constantly being reported but seldom understood. The show is presented by al-PHAN (which stands for Palestinian Humanities and Arts Now), a Chicago-based not-for-profit organization, and will be traveling around the U.S through next spring. 

New book on Israeli occupation draws angry response, harassment

The editors and publishers of a recently released anthology about international nonviolent action supporting Palestinian sovereignty have experienced harassment by phone and email. Harassment surrounding this publication is nothing new. Months earlier when the book was first advertised on the internet, one of the authors started receiving continuous hate calls and emails at her office, acts that completely disrupted the workplace. 

JCSER: Israeli Department of Antiquities hides outcome of archaeological excavations

The Jerusalem Center for Social & Economic Rights (JCSER) calls on the Israeli Department of Antiquities to reveal the outcome of archaeological excavations currently taking place under its supervision. These excavations are being carried out in Jerusalem’s old City; inside the Palestinian Museum, also known as the Rockefeller Museum in Occupied Jerusalem; and in Shu’fat, along the main Jerusalem-Ramallah road. 

Edward Said's breadth of interest

Perhaps the first thing one remembers about Edward Said was his breadth of interest. He was not only at home in music, literature, philosophy, or the understanding of politics, but also he was one of those rare people who saw the connections and the parallels between different disciplines, because he had an unusual understanding of the human spirit, and of the human being, and he recognized that parallels and paradoxes are not contradictions. The Palestinians have lost one of the most eloquent defenders of their aspirations. I have lost my soul mate. 

Theater Review: Jamil Khoury's "Precious Stones"

When a playwright tackles the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, sexual identity issues, class issues, Arab-American community issues, and Jewish-American community issues (among others), in a 90-minute play, not much room is left for anything else — like character development and breathing room. And that’s the main trouble with Jamil Khoury’s Precious Stones. Maureen Clare Murphy reviews the play for EI

Film review: James Longley's "Gaza Strip" (2002)

Cover of the video/DVD. James Longley’s Gaza Strip is a 74-minute documentary filmed between January and April 2001, a period that stretches from four months after the beginning of the Second Palestinian Intifada — immediately preceding the election of Ariel Sharon as Israel’s prime minister — up to the end of Sharon’s third month in office. “I made this film,” Longley notes in the director’s commentary that accompanies the very highly recommended DVD version, “to satisfy my own curiosity about what was happening in the Gaza Strip since I found that it was very difficult to find information in the mainstream media and get a detailed look at what was going on, what people there were like, what they were thinking about.” EI’s Nigel Parry reviews the film. 

Divine Intervention now available on VHS/DVD for universites and organisations

Avatar Films is continuing its release of Divine Intervention, the first Palestinian-made film ever to be widely distributed in the United States. Divine Intervention is available for screenings at universities, organizations and institutions, and is available on 35mm film, DVD, Digital Betacam, and VHS. Divine Intervention will be not released on home video and DVD until well into 2004.