Jumana Manna’s Peasant Politics, Kaleem Hawa, δημοσίευση στο Art in America [10/11/2022]Marilena Pateraki
After the fall of the Palestinian village of al-Birwa on June 11, 1948, its villagers lay in wait for 13 days, relying on the hospitality of their neighbors in the Western Galilee. Then, on the morning of June 23, they decided to recapture their village. Harvest time was about to end, and they wanted to tend their fields before their grain crop was ruined. As informants told Rosemary Sayigh in her seminal 1979 study, Palestinians: From Peasants to Revolutionaries, more than 200 men and women assembled and prepared to fight for their lands; around half were armed.
Caught by surprise, the occupying Zionist forces withdrew, leaving behind seven harvesting machines that had begun to reap the villagers’ crop. The victory was short-lived, but beautiful; now, the only remnants of al-Birwa are three houses, two shrines, and a school scattered amid cactuses and weeds. Today, the land is farmed by the residents of a nearby moshav, a type of cooperative agricultural settlement developed by Labor Zionists.
Around this same time, during what is known as the Palestinian nakba (disaster), Israeli troops headed east from al-Birwa to Majd al-Krum, where Jumana Manna’s grandparents were living. The women in his family related to Manna’s father, Adel, what came next, and he committed it to paper in his new book, Nakba and Survival (2022): the Zionist forces were joined by a contingent from the east, which then massacred some of the surrendered Palestinians in the village’s al-‘Ayn Square. The atrocities that transpired in the Galilee—one of the most fertile and coveted locales in semiarid Palestine—are among the rawest, a subset of Palestinian nakba histories preserved most often by women, who are the custodians of our communal memories.
Η συνέχεια εδώ.