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sharon's wall Arrow vol 5 no 3 contents
About borderlands volume 5 number 3, 2006

 


Sharon's Wall and the Dialectics of Inside/Outside [1]


Deborah Pike

Notre Dame University, Sydney

 

 

In The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard ponders modernity's obsession with circumscription and with what he terms, 'geometrism' (Bachelard, 1964: 213). According to Bachelard, we geometrise the world. From real estate to national borders, from nature reserves to nature strips, everything is cut-up, portioned, demarcated. Sharon's Wall in Israel/Palestine is a manifestation of this obsession with geometrism. Bachelard, engaging with phenomenology proposes that being, which is all around us, is not circumscribed - we are not the centre of being, nor is anything else, hence there is in contrast neither 'being-here' nor 'being-there' (1964: 213).

In this essay I present a meditation on the apartheid wall constructed in Israel and Palestine, between 2002 and 2006. I contemplate the meanings of this wall, its lived, material meanings as well as its architectural phenomenology: the spatial and ontological implications for those living either side. I examine the political impact of the binary rhetoric used in aspects concerning the media coverage of the wall. I then take an imaginative leap, and using Bachelard's ideas about interior and poetic space, suggest how a different logic, and a more creative conception of space may offer hope to those confined behind the wall.

 

Introduction

1. For centuries Israelis and Palestinians have been trying to scale an ideological and religious wall, profoundly entrenched in conflict and casualties. Over the last five years, Palestinians have seen this wall take a horrifyingly physical form. What are the ramifications, physical and psychical, of such an imposition?

Photograph of Sharon's Wall by Deborah Pike, 2004

2. In The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard ponders modernity's obsession with circumscription and with what he terms, 'geometrism' (Bachelard, 1964: 213). According to Bachelard, we geometrise the world. From real estate to national borders, from nature reserves to nature strips, everything is cut-up, portioned, demarcated. Motivated by an interest in history, religion, and architecture, I spent a month in July travelling throughout Israel/Palestine. While I was struck by the physical beauty of much of the landscape, and by the richness and diversity of its cities and villages, I was deeply affronted by an enormous wall that I encountered almost everywhere I went: a monstrous totem of modernity that seemed to run as far as the eye could see. Sharon's Wall in Israel/Palestine is a manifestation of this obsession with geometrism. Bachelard, engaging with phenomenology, proposes that being, which is all around us, is in contrast not circumscribed - we are not the centre of being, nor is anything else, hence there is neither 'being-here' nor 'being-there' (1964: 213).

3. In this essay I present a meditation on the apartheid wall constructed in Israel and Palestine, between 2002 and 2006. I contemplate the meanings of this wall, its lived, material meanings as well as its architectural phenomenology: the spatial and ontological implications for those living either side. I examine the political impact of the binary rhetoric that is used in aspects of media coverage concerning the wall. I then take an imaginative leap and, using Bachelard's ideas about interior and poetic space, suggest how a different logic, and a more creative conception of space may offer hope to those confined behind this wall.

Wailing over the Wall

4. In April 2002, former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon began to oversee the construction of a ten-metre-high concrete wall in Palestine, a wall built with 500 bulldozers imported from Illinois. At first this mysterious wall attracted only minor interest from the media. The Israeli public were given the impression it was being built along the Green Line, the designated Palestinian border since 1947. Palestinians did not recognise the impact of this wall at first as they could not even begin to imagine its astonishing dimensions. Maps of this wall were kept secret and information was scarce. However, when it became apparent to journalists that this wall was being built well into Palestinian territory as an act of Israeli territorial expropriation, it received considerable attention from the media and was eventually met with a storm of international condemnation. [2]

5. This wall is built with masses of barbed wire, radars, cameras, electrical apparatus with huge trenches dug on either side. It is a 650 kilometre-long amalgam of concrete and barbed wire which weaves its way throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem. So far it has cost the Israeli government approximately $USD 220 million to complete this engineering feat, with enormous cultural and environmental consequences. The most obvious historical parallel to this barrier is the Berlin Wall, which was 155 kilometres long. Whereas the Berlin Wall was on average 3.6 metres high, Sharon's wall is 8-10 meters high. Israel's barrier is therefore four times as long and in places twice as high as the Berlin Wall.

6. In its entirety the wall in Israel/Palestine constitutes the largest confiscation of Palestinian land since 1967. Slicing its way through Arab territory, it has devastated the agricultural base of the West Bank and has destroyed the possibility of a viable Palestinian state. Vast tracts of agricultural land and key water sources have been effectively annexed from the Arab peoples of this region. Thousands of Palestinian families have been expelled from their homes, leaving at least two million to live in decaying, impoverished towns, encaged by concrete walls. Further, the checkpoints on the borders of all Palestinian territories are heavily policed by Israeli military, and food trucks pass through to deliver food randomly, if at all. Palestinians who previously worked outside the walls are unable to leave. Most have no way to earn their living and with virtually no infrastructure to facilitate their present life, they have very little hope for a future. Local residents in the Palestinian town of el-Azariyeh, for example, have to use cranes to lift children over the wall to get to school. In the Palestinian town of Budrus there are no clinics, hospitals, high schools, universities, nor any other social or economic structure inside the enclave. Moreover, 80 per cent of workers in this village who were once employed outside their village are now forbidden to leave. They are robbed of their livelihoods.

Photograph of Abu Dis available at the Human Rights Watch site: http://www.hrw.org/photos/2003/israel/ , and reproduced with permission
from Agence France-Presse.

The awkwardness of daily life for the people of another Palestinian village, Abu Dis, is strikingly apparent in this picture above, where a young man on one side of the wall sells vegetables to the man on the other side of the wall.

7. On July 9, 2004, The International Court of Justice at The Hague deemed the wall a violation of international humanitarian and human rights law. The court further ruled illegal any part of the barrier built on the Palestinian side of the Green Line. Israel rejected the opinion. Nonetheless, after two legal cases in 2004 (Beit Sourik Village Council v The Government of Israel and Mara'abe v The Prime Minister of Israel), the Israeli government was instructed by the Supreme Court of Israel to alter the route of the barrier so that damaging impacts on Palestinians would be mitigated. This, along with US pressure to change the course of the wall so that it does not cut deeply into Palestinian territory, has caused the Israel government to revise the route of the barrier several times, without however making any substantial improvements to the living conditions of Palestinians. [3]

8. To this day, approximately 35 per cent of the wall has been constructed while another 12.5 per cent is under construction. Another 43 per cent of the wall has been approved, and while the remaining 9.5 per cent awaits approval, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has expressed no intention of halting the wall, stating in March 2006 that he was determined to set Israel's permanent borders by 2010 (Myre, 2006). The imposition of this wall means that six million Israelis possess 90 per cent of the land and water of both countries, while three-and-a-half million Palestinians, many of them refugees, are pushed into overcrowded ghetto-like spaces, with minimal resources. The Israeli government denies that this wall has any hidden political agenda, but it is much more than a measure taken to prevent terrorist attacks, its purpose is to acquire land. In 2002, Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres declared that if the Israelis were to separate themselves from the Palestinians all tensions would be solved: 'We will be on this side of the fence they will be on that side, and all problems will be over' (Bitton, 2004).

9. Architectural theorist Mark Wigley reminds us that 'walls are like texts inserted into the world of dissimulation to speak of an unattainable order beyond it' (Wigley, 1992: 379). Sharon's Wall represents this will to order. Since this imaginary order cannot literally be revealed in a material world, the surface of this wall becomes a mask concealing difference and disorder, which are concealed and removed from the eye as 'unsightly'. But this seemingly 'neutral' concrete surface and the order it appears to impose are concealing the stark irrationality of those who institute it. The building of such a wall is an attempt to establish a kind of inside/outside. Shimon Peres' words echo the myth of Them (outside) and Us (inside). But what if 'they' are inside the wall, and 'we' outside it? Who is to say who is outside and who is inside?

10. Jean Hyppolite spoke first of a myth of outside and inside. The significance of such a myth, he said, 'is felt fully in alienation, which is founded upon these two terms'. Such a formal opposition, such binary logic is 'incapable of remaining calm' (Hyppolite cited in Bachelard, 1964: 212). The wall creates a structural division between these two nations by alienating one from the other, but it is a division that exacerbates rather than eradicates tension between the two populations; it is therefore, an act of aggression. Accordingly Bachelard writes: 'Outside and inside are both intimate - they are always ready to be reversed, to exchange their hostility' (1964: 217-8).

11. In August 2003, Palestinian Journalist Hazem Saghieh declared: 'When all is said and done, the wall does not conceal its symbolic representation of a racist hierarchy: Inside there are citizens. And outside there are barbarians' (Saghieh, 2004). But such a reversal is equally as problematic and perpetuates the same oppositional logic. Bachelard asks us to let go of such definitive intuitions, reminding us that in any case, inside and outside as experienced by the imagination can no longer be taken in their simple reciprocity. Consequently, by omitting geometrical references when we speak of the first expressions of being, and by choosing more concrete, more phenomenologically exact inceptions, we can realise that the dialectics of inside and outside 'multiply with countless diversified nuances' (Bachelard, 1964: 216).

12. Oppositions such as inside/outside, Palestinian/Israeli are limiting and entirely un-nuanced. The history of Israel/Palestine, a fraught history of invasion and subjugation, reveals the evolution of groups of Semitic peoples and Semitic languages over centuries. One thousand years BCE, Canaanite tribes were 'absorbed' by Jewish Judeans. Arabs conquered the land in the seventh century and flourished there until the nineteenth century (Rowley, 1984). The histories of Arab and Israeli peoples are intimately intertwined, and this is reflected in the similarity of many of their cultural practices. In Nazareth, for example, I met a Christian Arab Palestinian woman with an Israeli Passport. In Ein-Hashofet, I met a young Jewish man in the Israeli Army, his father was an Islamic Palestinian, his mother Jewish, and he spent a much of his free time in a Benedictine monastery near Abu Gosh. These examples are testament to the slipperiness of binary taxonomies of identification. Where should these people live, inside or outside the wall?

Mapping History

Map of Israel/Palestine. Available at http://www.stopthewall.org. Reproduced with
permission by H. Darwood from the Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign.

13. The map of Israel/Palestine has been drawn and redrawn over decades. It is a palimpsest - in geographical terms - an illuminative metaphor for understanding geography as a series of erasures and over-writings that have transformed the shape of the world. It is hard to imagine another map more overwritten than this one, another landscape or territory more fought over and contested in history than this tiny portion of earth northeast of the Red Sea. One Kibbutz owner remarked to me, 'The more you learn about the history of this place, the less you know'. To read about the Arab-Israeli conflict is to be flung into a narrative of conflict, conquest and confusion. What was once Canaan - later to be named Palestine by the Romans - was at different times ruled by Egyptian Pharaohs, Hebrews, Assyrians, Chaladeans, Babylonians, Persians, Macedonians, the Egyptian Ptolemies and the Seleucids from Syria (Rowley, 1984).

14. French historian José Rabasa reminds us that 'History, the eye of the world, on an ideological level, defines the national character of the territories depicted. History thus naturalises particular national formations and institutionalises forgetfulness of earlier territorialisations in the perception of the world' (Rabasa, 2006: 322). One could also interpret this map, then, as a kind of mirror of forgetting. Indeed this exact phenomenon of 'forgetting history' is occurring right now in Israel/Palestine with the creation of the wall.

15. The yellow section and the light-brown section of this map highlight land designated Palestine after the Arab-Israeli War in 1948. The borders of this territory were defined by what is known as the 'Green Line'. The dark-brown section is the land designated Israel after the war in 1948. The blue and black lines indicate where the wall is being and has been built. The outrageousness of its construction is plainly evident when you see that the wall has been built on Palestinian lands and that much of it has been claimed by Israel, a highly illegal act of 'land-grabbing'. Furthermore, in 2003, the Israeli government ordered that non-Israeli citizens must apply for written permission to enter, leave, work and live in Arab areas that lie between Israel proper and the apartheid wall. [4]

16. In 1948 Palestinians owned more than 90 per cent of the land that is currently Israel/Palestine, and now the Arab population occupies only 10 per cent of its homeland. This Israeli invention or imposition of new borders is an act of inscription, an imposition of a new silhouette - a silhouette of domination. Palestine only acquires spatial meaning after the region has been inscribed by Israel.

17. Inside and outside constitute two planes of content and expression for reading a map. Who is inside the border? Who is outside? Under closer inspection of this map in particular, we find the inside and the outside organized in terms of a binary opposition between the external and the contingent.

Media Debates

18. The labelling of this wall is political. The ensuing media rhetoric it has inspired reveals the political position of each reporter. This Wall has been called a 'security fence' first by the former Israeli Prime Minister, and later an 'anti-terrorist barrier'. Humanitarian organisations call it the 'Apartheid Wall' and Palestinians themselves refer to it as the 'Berlin Wall' or the 'racial segregation wall'. The Electronic Intifada published an article on the wall entitled 'Is it a Fence, is it a Wall? No it's a Separation Barrier' (Parry, 2003), a study of the implications of such rhetoric. The Israeli government insists on the euphemistic term 'separation fence' whereas the reality is much more sinister and imposing.

19. The Guardian journalist Marouf Zahran claims that this wall was a 'tightening noose' around the necks of Palestinians' (Zahran, 2004). Israeli 'refusenik' Pat Twair argues that Sharon is creating the world's 'largest open air prison' (Twair, 2004). The ARIJ calls it 'living in a cage' (ARIJ, 2004). Israeli reporter Ran HaCohen believes that the keeping silent on this gigantic project and its genocidal ramifications is a moral crime 'of which almost the entire western media is guilty' (HaCohen, 2003). Middle East commentator Emmanual Winston predicts that 'This city of the wall will grow into a typical festering refugee camp of squalor, filth and disease', and that such conditions will do nothing to mitigate terrorism (Winston, 2004).

20. There has been resistance in Palestine to the construction of this wall, but one often needs to refer to alternative media for reporting to read about it. There have been many peaceful demonstrations by Palestinians; however, the idea of non-violent Palestinian resistance sharply contradicts the Western stereotype of a nation of suicide bombers, hence these events are not well covered. Palestinians themselves have written on the wall in resistance. There is much artwork on the wall, some of it beautiful and expressive, and some depicting the nature that lies beyond it. The plight of the Palestinians became the concern of the international public in May 2004 when ten thousand took to the streets in Trafalgar Square, London. The most recent protest against ghettoisation was held in the Palestinian town of Al Kahder in June 2006 .

'Exist to Resist'. Photograph by Omar Tesdell, International Center of
Bethlehem. Reproduced with permission.

21. Not only has the International Court of Justice condemned the wall, but so too have Israeli human rights groups, the UN, and the World Council of Churches; the latter adopting a statement in February 2004 demanding Israel halt and reverse the construction of the barrier, and criticising the Israeli government for the violations of human rights that have occurred as a result. Jewish resistance to the wall has also been well articulated. In Jerusalem, I met an Israeli tour guide who denounced the wall was 'unjust' and 'nothing but madness'. The Israeli peace bloc, Gush Shalom, view the wall as a grave setback in peace negotiations. The American administration apparently expressed shy and faint reservations about the 'separation wall,' without taking any tangible steps to prevent it. In his New York Times article, philosopher Noam Chomsky declared that the Palestinian situation would not be resolved without the help of the US' (Chomsky, 2004). On November 13, 2005, US Senator Hilary Clinton announced that she supported the barrier, insisting that the wall 'is not against the Palestinian people', but 'against the terrorists' (Van Auken, 2006).

Imaginative Responses

22. The madness of the wall is the focus of a French documentary, Mur, directed by Simone Bitton. Bitton interviews the workers building the wall, who come from all over - they are Jewish, Russian, Palestinian, Muslim, and Christian. In an interview with a Palestinian bulldozer operator, she poses the question: 'How do you feel, building your own prison?' His response is: 'I get paid well to do this and I have to earn a living somehow' (Bitton, 2004). The 2006 Chicago Palestine Film Festival showcased several short films on the subject of 'living behind the wall', the most poignant of these being Yasmine's Song, the story of a love literally thwarted by the gross immovable obstacle of the wall.

23. One of the fundamental problems arising from the conflict of state and individual is that of 'place'. 'Place' places us in that dimension which reveals the meaning of being. 'Place' places us in such a way that reveals the external bounds of our existence and at the same time the depths of freedom and reality. What happens, then, to being, when we are dis placed?

24. In his essay, 'Building, Dwelling, Thinking', German Philosopher Martin Heidegger argues that the experience of space emerges from the experience of place itself, of its locality. While place is defined by its locality, space has to do with the individual's phenomenological awareness. Space is thus not distinguished by its various places, but by one's sense of being . Heidegger further posits that the phenomenological essence of space/place depends upon the nature of its boundary. Thus a boundary is not a limiting factor over space, it is actually a point of origin. It is where something begins its physical existence (Heidegger, 1993: 332). According to Heidegger, by being alienated from one's own place, one's own sense of space, one's own ontological sense changes. I am interested, then, in how this wall affects the being of those displaced, those who are trying to exist behind it.

25. There are Palestinians who experience the wall as suffocation and a strangulation. I have met men and women who have been psychologically diminished by their straitened circumstances. They have lost their livelihoods, their land, their raison d'être. Their children are forced into begging, and they suffer the excruciating losses of those around them, loved ones killed through acts of violence, starvation and deprivation. Palestinian Mundher Elias al-Bandak from Bethlehem says: 'You cannot measure the psychological impact of the wall. You can't capture it in words or images. Nor can you control it or be treated for it or push it away. This ghost never goes away, and it always controls your consciousness: Even when you sleep, the nightmare grabs hold of you. When you are made to feel like an animal, confined by walls' (Audeh, 2003).

26. The question arises then, as to how anyone can survive these conditions - how are such people able to exist, to dwell in such circumstances? Architectural theorist Bernard Tschumi believes that 'Imagination, cultivating interior space, may be the only means to transcend material space' (Tschumi, 1990: 29). This is very much in keeping with Bachelard's ideas.

27. I had a rare opportunity to speak with a French nun, Sister Martha, who is part of the Sisters of Emmanuel convent, a silent, closed order. This convent is situated in the Palestinian town of Bethlehem. She spoke to me inside a Byzantine chapel; the wall of Israel had been built right outside her convent. In face of her spatial strictures she, too, resorts to imagination and to contemplation, the cultivation of an interior space.

Photograph by Deborah Pike, 2004.

Martha Says:

We are lucky, the wall is just behind us here - this building has not been demolished, we are still here and we have our home. Before the wall was built we could see the magnificent valley before us. The great basilica on the hill just opposite, the olive trees and the river Jordan. It was magnificent countryside. But we have seen this view, and we can now keep it in our minds.

'But you see', Martha continues:

It is an atrocious situation for the Israelis as it is for the Palestinians. There are those for whom the wall is a continual presence in their lives, something important and prohibiting - and there are others for whom it is not serious. We are open, we don't judge - neither those who made the wall or those who live behind the wall.

Here in Bethlehem, the wall encircles us completely. We face Jerusalem but cannot see it, the view is completely blocked. All around Bethlehem there is this electric wall, the enclosure, it is dangerous and no one can leave. We have now been cut off from our retreat house, the town hall, and the university. Entire families have been cut off from one another; it is really like the Berlin Wall. People try to climb the wall, cross over, leave; the hospitals are full of people who have broken their arms and legs trying to climb over, because, despite everything, they must live.

The wall behind us was built in 10 days. One day it wasn't there and then a week later, everything was blocked off. It was an intense shock. But what we learned is what our Mother Superior told us: that this wall for us is like Jacob's Ladder, another step to the divine. Everyone who comes here to this monastery is welcomed and called to deepen himself or herself in contemplation.

Martha lives in a series of enclosures - enclosed in her medieval habit, enclosed in silence, enclosed, not only behind the walls of her convent, but behind the wall of Israel. But her humour is not lost; she insists that 'there are no better conditions for sanctity'.

28. Bachelard interprets space not as Euclidean, geometric, scientific, infinite or empty, but rather as imaginal and poetic. He describes his method as a 'recourse to the phenomenology of the imagination ... understood as the phenomenon of the poetic image when it emerges into the consciousness as a direct product of the heart, soul and being of (the person)' (Bachelard, 1964: xiv). This notion of lived space reverses our typical notions of space as an empty medium in which we act and live our lives. In this typical view, space is a kind of three-dimensional canvas on which our actions are inscribed.

29. In Bachelard's view, paradoxically, space constituted by the imagination is bounded and real: 'To the extent I conceive of and am aware of my being at all, I constitute its boundaries. These are fluid, mutable, and permeable, but they are necessary exigents of being' (1964: 7). Interior space is thus bound by the particularities of the imagination, and not by material reality. Bachelard reflects on the poetic image of being, within its imaginal boundaries, as 'reverberative and resonant':

Imaginal space is ... not simply a container for our actions and our lives but created by and constitutive of them. We may analyze or explore imaginal space through a kind of topo-analysis, a study of the localities of our intimate lives. (1964: xii)

Inhabiting the physical space of the monastery, then, becomes a way to enter an internalised, intimate space. By advocating the cultivation of interior and 'imaginal' space, Martha's ideas resemble those of Eastern and Western mystics.

30. Spanish mystic Teresa of Avila's Interior Castle is a poetic text in Bachelard's sense. On Trinity Sunday, 1577, in a flash of imaginative or divine inspiration, Teresa of Avila had a vision: It was 'A most beautiful crystal globe like a castle in which [she] ... saw seven dwelling places, and in the seventh, which was in the center, the King of Glory dwelt in the greatest splendor. From there he beautified and illumined all those dwelling places to the outer wall' (Teresa of Avila, 1980: 268). Teresa translates her vision using the language of 'building' and constructing: 'I will set it down. I will give a foundation to build upon' (1980: 280). Using the metaphor of the many-chambered castle, she creatively maps her interiority. Each chamber is a mansion of contemplation, representing the different stages of spiritual depth. Contemplation is the entry gate, with the divine at the centre. The soul is described in spatial terms: 'We must always think of the soul as high and wide and spacious, it is impossible to exaggerate its size. The soul which gives itself to contemplation must absolutely have no limits set on it ... it must be free to roam through these rooms, everywhere, above, below and to the side' (1980: 285).

31. Teresa of Avila uses the house metaphor for the spiritual self. Her book The Interior Castle was first entitled 'Dwelling Places', suggesting that one truly dwells in an interior, spiritual sense rather than in a material sense. These notions are reiterated in the writings of other mystics such as Meister Eckhart (1981) and in the Taoist principles of Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching (1989).

32. While Israeli women recite their prayers by the Weeping Wall of Jerusalem, Palestinians weep over their own wall, Sharon's apartheid wall. By inaugurating a division between inside and outside, architecture, in this instance, becomes a weapon of warfare, an incursion. Relations between Arabs and Israelis will not improve as long as the wall stands. Although representing a will to order, to power and control, it is an illusion of sorts - for the imagination of those behind it can never be constricted, as Bachelard reminds us. Hard as we try to circumscribe the material world, 'we can only really engrave ourselves in solitary dreams' (Bachelard, 1964: 201).

 

Deborah Pike is a Sydney-based writer and lecturer. She has taught poetry and linguistics at the University of Paris VII, Denis-Diderot, as well as literature, drama, media and cultural studies at the University of Sydney and UTS. She currently lectures in Contemporary World Literature and the Western Canon at the University of Notre Dame, Sydney. Her research interests include literature and philosophy, literary theory, mysticism and psychoanalysis. She has published in the Australian Review of Public Affairs and the Australian Financial Review .

Notes

[1] Another version of this paper was presented at the Rhetoric, Politics, Ethics Conference, held at Ghent University, Belgium in April 2005. All translations from French are my own. I am grateful to unnamed referees for their thoughtful comments and feedback on this paper. I am impelled to quote one referee, whose words offer a poignant conclusion: 'Although imagination and the development of interior space will not put food on the table - let alone give access to education or medical treatment, nor lead to employment - it may be that the imagined poetic spaces are all that is left for thousands that the international community can no longer see'.

[2] See C. McGreal (2004) 'World court tells Israel to tear down illegal wall', The Guardian , July 10. See also (2003) 'UN Report Slams Israeli Wall as Illegal Annexation of Palestinian Land', Agence France-Presse , September 30. Also E. O'Loughlin (2003) 'Israeli Fence Will Leave 70,000 Palestinians in No-Man's-Land', The Sydney Morning Herald , November 1. See also C. Cook (2003) 'Israel's Wall Not Really About Security' for the Middle East Research and Information Project and the Duluth News-Tribune , September.

[3] There are some excellent resources on the recent state of affairs in Palestine which detail the socio-political conditions such as R. Baroud (2006) The Second Palestinian Intifada: A Chronicle of a People's Struggle ; I. Pappe (2006) The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine ; and T. Reinhart (2003) The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine Since 2003 . For first-hand testimonies from Palestinians about their daily lives, Ramzy Baroud's (2002) collection is excellent : Searching Jenin: Eyewitness Accounts of the Israeli Invasion . The Institute for Middle East Understanding also publishes 'Letters from Palestine' (2006). See also N. Sharansky (2006) 'The Price of Ignoring Palestinians' Needs' in the International Herald Tribune , Wednesday February 1.

[4] See R. Khaldi (2006) The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood . See also Statement by Ambassador Warren W. Tichenor of the US Human Rights Council (2006), 'Report of the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories Occupied Since 1967'.

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