Indigenous Resurgence

An excerpt from Noura Erakat’s recent piece (“Designing the Future in Palestine”) in Boston Review. Read the full article. It’s so worth it.

…[Palestinians] are moving in tandem with other Indigenous communities increasingly engaged in Indigenous resurgence. This is a phenomenon, explains Cherokee political scientist Jeff Corntasssel, that reframes decolonization by turning away from the state to “focus more fully on the complex interrelationships between Indigenous nationhood, place-based relationships, and community centered practices that reinvigorate everyday acts of renewal and regeneration.” This shift does not reject state-centric diplomacy or abandon the struggle against the settler sovereign. A full pivot away from such engagement would be short-sighted and counterproductive, especially for Palestinians who remain forcibly exiled from their lands and barricaded within militarized ghettoes. Rather, Indigenous resurgence centers Indigenous life and governance alongside other approaches. It seeks to undo the alienating force of colonization by reconnecting “homelands, cultures, and communities.” In particular regard to Palestinians, scholars Nour Joudah, Tareq Radi, Dina Omar, and Randa Wahbe explain, resurgence facilitates a “self-recognition” that transforms “fragmentation into a strength” and “variegated experiences of loss” into “a politics of care.”

If decolonization typically pits native against settler in a struggle for the land, Indigenous resurgence focuses on how to belong most ethically in relationship to one another and to the land. 

What Keeps Us Alive

geezBy Lydia Wylie-Kellermann. Published in Geez Magazine’s Spring issue.

If each hour brings death
If time is a den of thieves
The breezes carry a scent of evil
And life is just a moving target
you will ask why we sing…

We sing because the river is humming
And when the river hums
The river hums
We sing because cruelty has no name
But we can name its destiny
We sing because the child because everything
Because the future because the people
We sing because the survivors
And our dead want us to sing

(Excerpt from Mario Benedetti’s Por Que Cantamos) Continue reading “What Keeps Us Alive”

Guest Ethics

CPTFrom John of Christian Peacemaker Teams

For the last year, I have lived as a guest. Here’s what I’ve learned so far.

Since I graduated college last May, taking that so-called next step into “adulthood” (whatever that is), I have lived as a guest in other people’s spaces. Talking with other people who have also just finished college, there is something inevitable about this – whether you move to a new city, move back to your parent’s place, or stay in the place you went to school, you’re not really “at home.” To attend a residential college, as I did, is to already be living in someone else’s space – a college campus or a dorm can be “ours,” the student body’s, but because each of us spend so little time in it, it is never really “mine.”
Continue reading “Guest Ethics”

A Dedication to the Children of Palestine

palestinePoetry by Shahin Shabanian
Artwork by Ibrahim Ozdabak

I know you, child
I have seen your face full of fears
And your eyes full of tears.

Your fears are real as they were then:
When you were abused in ghettos of Europe,
And in the concentration camps, without a hope.
Gassed and burned in the ovens: a damned consternation,
The instigating brutes called it the “Final Solution.”
Continue reading “A Dedication to the Children of Palestine”

Arson

From Ed Crouch, a member of the United Church of Christ, Voices of Palestine, Palestine Task Force and INOC (Interfaith Network of Concern for the people of the Middle East). Published in the Sept-Oct 2014 issue of Hospitality, the newsletter of the Open Door Community of Atlanta.

An evening breeze whispers through
the ripe olive grove, “Ashes to ashes.”

Magnificent, thick, twisted trunks, rooted in
poor soil, withstanding drought for centuries, Continue reading “Arson”