Report Back: Librarians and Archivists for Palestine

It was three months ago that the “Librarians and Archivists for Palestine” group traveled throughout Palestine and Israel in order to connect with colleagues, bear witness, share skills, and seek out possibilities for joint work. Now, coming on October 24, the group will report back on a wide range of findings:

 

From the Librarians to Pal Facebook group, taken this summer: "Photo of all of us taken by Dua'a Qirresh, Librarian at the Dar Issaf Nashashibi Library in Jerusalem - a library trying to retrieve and protect manuscripts not looted by the Israelis."
From the Librarians to Pal Facebook group, taken this summer: “Photo of all of us taken by Dua’a Qirresh, Librarian at the Dar Issaf Nashashibi Library in Jerusalem – a library trying to retrieve and protect manuscripts not looted by the Israelis.”

According to organizers:

The delegation bore witness to the destruction, theft and appropriation of books and historical documents, and was inspired by the many projects, institutions, and individuals engaged in daily resistance to settler-colonialism. Five delegates will discuss their experiences on the delegation, share some of the projects that were visited, and provide an overview of the next steps for the delegation’s ongoing solidarity work.

The October 24 event will be held from 7-9 p.m. at Bluestockings on 172 Allen St, between Stanton and Rivington.

Also this weekend, the Christian Science Monitor reported on “A quest to preserve Palestinian heritage in the digital stacks,” noting Sami Batrawi’s struggle to open an online Palestinian Library of Congress and the ongoing struggle to both preserve and make accessible Palestinian artistic and intellectual heritage.

According to the CS Monitor, “Batrawi is trying to get the PA to approve an online Palestinian national library, which would provide digitized access not only to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza but also to Palestinian refugees and expats spread out across the Middle East, Europe, Latin America, and the US.”

The October 24 event will surely be an interesting one. The group, pictured above, included 16 librarians and archivists from the United States, Canada, Sweden and Palestine who work in a variety of institutions and settings, including public and academic libraries, community archives, non-profits, and as independent scholars.

mlynxqualey

One thought on “Report Back: Librarians and Archivists for Palestine

  1. Dear Arabic Literature Editor

    I hope you have space for this piece by a contemporary Egyptian poet in the memory of October 6

    صلاة العابر   فتحي عبد السميع ــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــ إلي ذكري حكايات الخال حمدان أبو العفي عن الحرب      مفتتح  

    أعرف أن اللحظة قاسية  أن نصالا لا حصر لها تكبر في أعضائي أن جرادا فولاذيا ينقض من الأركان الأربعة ولا يترك بين الجنبين سنابل أو قطنا

    أعرف أن اللحظة قاسية والريح معاندة لكني أعرف أيضا  أني أول من سار مع الموت علي جسر الأبدية مثل حبيبين وأول من حفر جذع الوقت فضاء وعصافير  وأول من بدأ التقويم  وآخر من يفْنَي . 

    في جسدي عضو ما  يحتاج إلي وخزة دبوس كي يتحرك جنزير في الروح  ويطحن تلك الغيبوبة طحنا .

    اللحظة قاسية  أعرف لكني أحتاج إلي وخزة دبوس ما كي أعرف كيف أغيِّب في النيل يديَّ فتخرج زلزالا 

    كيف أرص الحزن جوار الحزن  و أنسج لحنا .     Prayer by a Soldier Who Crossed the Canal   Fathi Abdel Samie’ ــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــــ Remembering the Tales of War Told by Uncle Hamdan Abu Alfy   Incipit   ‘Tis a tough moment, I know, and arrows too many to count grow in me; a steel locusts assault from every corner leaving not a single corn not a single cotton ball.   The moment is tough, I know, the wind is so obstinate, but I also know I am the first to walk with death hand in hand, like two lovers, On the bridge to deathlessness; I am the first to cut the trunk of time Into a space for flying birds; the first to launch a calendar, and the last to perish.   Some part of me badly needs a pin prick that a chain in my soul may move and harshly crush the coma.   The moment is harsh, I know, but I badly need some pin prick so that I get to know how to hide my hands into the River Nile so that they get out an earthquake; how to put agonies together side by side to weave a melody.

    Trans. by Bahaa+eddin M. Mazid

       

    Bahaa-eddin M. Mazid

    Professor of Linguistics and Translation Chair, Department of English Language and Literature Faculty of Arts, Sohag University Sohag, Egypt

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