Greg Thomas: I have long been interested in the resonances between the Nakba and the Maafa – this is the Swahili word chosen for what is otherwise dubbed the “Middle Passage” in the history of African enslavement in the Americas, in North America specifically in this case. Both terms translate to the same thing: disaster or catastrophe. Both are used for enormous dislocating experiences that go on to define ongoing lives of struggle. Whenever I hear “Nakba,” I think immediately Maafa.
The Nakba Files spoke with Greg Thomas, Associate Professor of English at Tufts University (USA) and curator of the traveling exhibit “George Jackson in the Sun of Palestine,” which will run at Haifa’s Khashabi Theater from 28 October 2016 to 14 January 2017. Thomas is writing a book about George Jackson (1941-1971), a prominent member of the Black Panther Party (BPP) and a political prisoner who was assassinated by state authorities. The exhibit highlights connections between Palestinian and Black American experiences of captivity.
An interview with Professor Michael Karayanni of Hebrew University’s Law Faculty about his recent book, Conflicts in a Conflict: A Conflict of Laws Case Study of Israel and the Palestinian Territories.
The state of Israel has demolished the “unrecognized” Bedouin village of al-‘Araqib 101 times in order to allow the Jewish National Fund to plant forests. The Nakba Files spoke to 19-year-old Hala Abu Medeghem, who refuses to leave her land.
As part of an ongoing dialogue with the Native rights movement in the United States, Adalah USA Representative Nadia Ben-Youssef recently sat down with Melanie Yazzie and Nick Estes, scholar-activists and founders of Red Nation, a coalition of Native and non-Native activists, educators, students and community organizers advocating Native liberation. They discussed the points of intersection between Palestinian and Native histories and consider ways forward to reclaim memory as a force for collective liberation.
How can one think productively about the Holocaust and the Nakba together? Political theorist Bashir Bashir argues that confronting this question is necessary in order to develop a new approach to decolonization in Israel/Palestine. Bashir agreed to discuss the project of engaging the Holocaust and Nakba together in a recent interview with The Nakba Files.
On May 25, the Van Leer Institute in Jerusalem hosted a day-long conference under the title. “To Whom Does the Past Belong? Archive and Society in Israel.” Three historians involved with the event — On Barak, Liat Kozma, and Avner Wishnitzer — shared their thoughts with the editors of The Nakba Files.
To mark the launch of The Nakba Files, three of the site’s Editors — Hassan Jabareen, Katherine Franke, and Suhad Bishara — share their thoughts on the Nakba, the law, and what lies in between.