ANSO096 | Autumn | 6 ECTS

Screening the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Competing and Complementary Narratives through Cinematic Representations

A consistent body of knowledge about the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been produced by several social science disciplines. However, to date, few attempts have been made to combine that knowledge with the narratives produced on the conflict by films, both fictions and documentaries. Audio-visual materials related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are 'constructions' and interpretations of 'realities' at different levels, and constitute an important (memory and documentary) archive which can complement and accompany the work of research in human and social sciences. This seminar will therefore aim at examining, in a socio-political and historical perspective, the role of film directors - Israeli and Palestinian in particular- as artists and social actors, who contribute to (re)shape national and local narratives, in supporting or challenging official histories and collective memories. A selection of films produced over a time span of 20 years will be studied: from those related to the Second Intifada (2000-2005) and its immediate aftermath, to those covering the ongoing conflict during the past decade. Interestingly, the Israeli and Palestinian cinematic narratives produced during these two periods show important aspects of convergence and complementarity in addressing peace and conflict dynamics in both societies. And gendering the approaches of film directors to the chosen movies' topics will be part and parcel of the overall endeavour.