BOOKS IN BRIEF
heen reflects upon changes in an updated Preface from pre- to post9/11 productions. Despite a continued vilification of Arabs on screen, he has also noted a positive interest in the Middle East, tackling some of the ignorance around Arabs and Muslims. Due to this new interest, several Arab films have actually been nominated at the Academy Award, such as Hany Abu Assad’s Omar. This shows a trend of interest in films where Arabs are protagonists, yet to be achieved by Hollywood and the major US TV networks series. Shaheen has also noted that some Arab actors that are turning down roles as Arab villains, and finding a way round typecasting through well received stand-up comedy. Published by Olive Branch Press, USA. ISBN: 9781566567527. Pbk, 617pp, $30.00/£19.99. Aurora Tellenbach
Keep Your Eye on the Wall is a broad collection of texts and photos of the Separation Wall. Despite the tragic circumstances, Raja Shehadeh found the photographs “shockingly beautiful”. Convinced the wall be destroyed, the landscape may never be fully restored. Meant to prevent Palestinians from getting across, Raed Bawayah has documented those who succeeded in doing just that but living in poor conditions. In Adania Shibli’s story, a man is fenced in when the wall is built outside his house. Noel Jabbour’s captures the contrasts. A white Israeli settlement in the distance, on the Palestinian side a skinny horse is grazing. Kai Wiedenhöfer, who documented the Berlin Wall coming down, here captures the construction of the Separation Wall. Christine Leuenberger writes that in our time more walls are being erected with a growing ignorance about those on the other side. Yael Lerer, who worked with Juliano Mer-Khamis in Jenin, remembers how they used both Arabic and Hebrew, taking on false identities when crossing checkpoints. Malu Halasa describes how Palestinian artists have argued over whether to use the wall or not, and reflects on the perception of who is in charge. The wall has also been used for commemorating the dead, as recorded in Taysir Batniji’s photos. Steve Sabella’s collages of wall, wire and concrete show the madness in the construction. Raeda Saadeh takes a comical view – in one of her photos a woman is trying to pull the wall down with a rope. Edited by Olivia Snaije and Mitchell Albert, Saqi Books 2013, ISBN: 9780863567599, 192pp, Hbk, £45.00/$69.95. Aurora Tellenbach
BANIPAL 53 – SUMMER 2015 209
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