How do Palestinians live, imagine and reflect on home and exile in this period of a stateless and transitory Palestine and a sharp escalation in Israeli state violence and accompanying Palestinian oppression? How can exile and home be written? In this volume of new writing, fifteen innovative and outstanding Palestinian writers—essayists, poets, novelists, critics, artists and memoirists—respond with their reflections, experiences, memories and polemics. Their contributions—poignant, humorous, intimate, reflective, intensely political—make for an offering that is remarkable for the candor and grace with which it explores the many individual and collective experiences of waiting, living for, and seeking Palestine. Contributors include: Lila Abu-Lughod, Susan Abulhawa, Suad Amiry, Rana Barakat, Mourid Barghouti, Beshara Doumani, Sharif S. Elmusa, Rema Hammami, Mischa Hiller, Emily Jacir, Penny Johnson, Fady Joudah, Jean Said Makdisi, Karma Nabulsi, Raeda Sa’adeh, Raja Shehadeh, Adania Shibli.
About the Author
Penny Johnson is the associate editor of the Jerusalem Quarterly. Raja Shehadeh is the author of several highly-acclaimed books, including Palestinian Walks, winner of the Orwell Prize, and We Could Have Been Friends, My Father and I: A Palestinian Memoir.
It may be quite correct to assume that most poets and novelists could not lead such a perilous expedition but then that is not their role. Instead their task is to write and in doing so teach, inform, enlighten and entertain. A role beautifully fulfilled in this fine collection of new Palestinian writing on exile and home.
In these grittily poetic stories, Palestinian writers imaginatively reclaim what has been lost. — Fiona Capp, The Age
Wry, candid, poignant, Seeking Palestine is a tribute to a people who no matter how displaced and dispossessed remain nevertheless determined. — Rakhshanda Jalil, The Hindu
Seeking Palestine: New Palestinian Writing on Exile and Home, edited by Penny Johnson and Raja Shehadeh, is a unique collection of writing and images by artists coming from a variety of different disciplines, from academics in the social and political sciences, to poets, award-winning fiction and nonfiction writers, the writers of bestsellers as well as visual artists. It is a motley variety of styles and approaches with an unwaveringly high quality of writing throughout, a credit to the editors as well as the contributors themselves. This is an extraordinarily frank, fresh and unsentimental assessment of what Palestinians are and have become. It is not only a testimony as to the strength, dedication and sticking power of Palestinian people, but also of the writers themselves.