Remembering Al Nakba in Jordan

al nakba week
Originally uploaded by marcynewman.

Apparently it’s basically illegal to be Palestinian in Jordan. You can’t talk about it in school textbooks, you can’t sing nationalist songs, and god forbid you want to hold a demonstration on al nakba day. At least there is something going on in Jordan this week for al nakba day, however. There is a week of films being held at the Al Balad Theater between Wild Jordan/downtown. Here is the list of events:

The Research Centre for Refugee Studies (RCRS),
Balad Theatre, & The Royal Film Commission Presents “Palestinian Refugee Week” 15-19 May 2006 at Balad Theatre Program:

Everyday 15-19/5/2006, 4-10pm:
– Documentary films continuously playing: “Palestinian Tent” by Mohammad Abu Fleh (51 min.) – 2004
“Inside Outside” by Osama Qashoo (22 min.) – 2006
“The Separation Wall” by Mustafa Barghouthi
“The Return” by Iyad Daoud (69 min.) – 2000
– Book Exhibit (Bustan Bookstore, RCRS, Arab Education Forum and Palestinian Encyclopedia)
– Knafeh stand (Habibah)
– Blue Fig coffee stand (first day free)

Monday 15/5/2006:
– 6.30 – 7.30pm: Opening Ceremony and Reception
– 8pm: Screening of documentary films:
“Women beyond Borders” by Jean Chammoun (54 min.) – 2003
“3 Ghettos and 1 Land” by Suhad Khatib (12 min.) – 2004
“Emotional Rescue” by Helena Waldman (20 min.) – 2005

Tuesday 16/5/2006:
– 7pm: Palestinian Artist Ismail Shammout (talk and art exhibit)
– 8.30pm: Screening of documentary films:
“Musa’s Deed” by Azza Al-Hasan (20 min.) – 1997
“Frontiers of Dreams and Fears” by Mai Masri (60 min.) – 2002
“Noor” by Tareq Al-Nasser (5 min.)

Wednesday 17/5/2006:
– 6.30 – 8pm:
Lecture by Fawaz Salameh: “The Oral History Project”
Lecture by Musa Barhoumeh: “The Camp: an exile condensed by language”
– 8.30pm: Screening of documentary films:
“Neither Here Nor There” by Hicham Kayed (44 min.) – 2006
“Lemonade” by Hicham Kayed (13 min.) – 2004
“Sukkar Yafa” by Hicham Kayed (33 min.) – 2002
“Sana’ud” by Maher Far, Zakaria Abu Ali, and Abdallah Odeh (8 min.) – 2003

Thursday 18/5/2006:
– 7 – 8pm: Artist Samia Zaru (talk and art exhibit: “Tents and Stones”)
– 8.30pm: Song performance by Zein Awad (ticket: 5 JD)

Friday 19/5/2006:
– 3-4.30pm: Fida Group for Popular Zajal and Dabkeh
– 8.30pm: Song performance by Makadi Nahhas (ticket: 5 JD)

For concert tickets and more information please contact RCRS at 5627887 or 079/6616114


8 thoughts on “Remembering Al Nakba in Jordan

  1. I never thought you’d be very schizophrenic,
    you are saying it’s illegal to be Palestinian in Jordan while you are listing week of events

    and as for mentioning i in school textbooks, singing nationalist songs and demonstration, yes it’s forbidden because this is Jordan, here we teach Jordanian history, songs and we demonstrate for Jordanian related stuff which could be related to Palestinian.

  2. Exaggeration!

    You should have seen the pro Palestine demonstations in 2002 in front of the western embassies and the UN.

    You should see the outpouring of palestinian identity during Marcel Khalifeh concerts in Jordan.

    And as Jad said, a full page of events (and coverage in the press).

    The palestinian/jordanian identity thing is indeed complicated. But saying that it is ‘illegal’ to be a palestinian in jordan is just too much.

  3. Yes, people, I am being hyperbolic; but I am being so to make a point. While there may be a lot of cultural activities about refugees happening in Jordan this week, I find it disturbing that little of these activities are political. Indeed if they were I suspect they would not be planned and public in this way. The fact that demonstrations are not allowed, for instance, is especially disturbing as is the way in which Palestinian identity must be downplayed and repressed under the label of Jordan first.


  4. Ahmad,
    Indeed Palestinian/Jordanian identify are very complicated and this because one cannot tell if he’s Jordanian or Palestinian as we are mixed as in mixed grill, I’ve lots of friends who are Palestinian living in Jordan and they know only Jordan and some other Jordanian friends with relatives of the other root of their family down there in Palestine.

    Don’t take it as there is a conspiracy behind every oxygen dose you breath, demonstrations are not allowed for all reasons and actually it’s allowed but you have to take written permission from the ministry of interior and yes the government has very good reason to restrict it, We are not well educated about democracy and walahi we don’t know how to use it, few years back when al-dora demonstration started from Al-hussinie mosque to Shmisani thru wadi sagra street (Where I live), the demonstrators destroyed almost if not all Signs, cars glass, and I swear they started the fight with the police while the police was trying to calm them down anyway back to the point, even demonstrations for Jordan require permission from MOI.

    now as for Jordan first, I don’t know why it bothers you? actually why you are focusing on it not on it’s result? the goal is to help whatever the cover or the label is.

  5. It’s amazing how deeply held views can make their holders selectively-blind, seeing only what justifies their beliefs and hate.

  6. Several quotes from Dr. Newman:
    The state of Israel is using Nazi Germany’s tactics and these Jews who so deeply believe in their suffering in the European holocaust are unwilling to intervene. Where is the moral outrage????

    Moreover, ethnic cleansing, extermination, and transfer have been pursued by Israel since 1948. I see no distinction between one holocaust and another.

    Where is the world-wide Christian outrage over the new Nazi-like prison that processes people who wish to enter the place where Jesus was born?

    She uses this sort of demogogic language often. Don’t take it personally.

  7. Just to be very clear for the young simple-minded, ignorant Dark Provost who has a difficult time making distinctions: these comments he quotes, and general comments about Israeli practices in Palestine: not hyperbole. It’s real and if anyone who was open minded and not a Zionist zombie like Mr. Dark Provost, were to see it for themselves they’d have a difficult time not making the same comparisons.


  8. I am sorry if you didn’t comprehend the childish babbling of a 19-year-old; I probably should have waited for my brain to develop a bit more. What I am saying is that your use of the English language in this blog has been irresponsible. What is happening in the occupied territories is horrible and needs to be resolved, largely through concessions on the part of Israel. But to describe the Israelis as Nazis for the deaths of less than 4000 is nothing short of criminal. Not to minimize the importance of every life that has been lost, but the Nazis killed 11 million civilians in systematic purges. I just don’t see that happening in the Occupied Territories. Of course, my Body is not currently On The Line, so maybe I’m not allowed to have an opinion.

    P.S. Is the United States equivalent to the Nazi regime for seizing the Southwest & not allowing full-scale Mexican immigration?

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