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Discussion with Director Julian Schnabel & Novelist Rula Jebreal
When: 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Where: 417 Altschul Auditorium, International Affairs Building, Columbia University,
420 West 118th Street, NY, NY 10027

Moderated by Professors:

HAMID DABASHI, Professor of Iranian Studies & Comparative Literature, Columbia University HELGA TAWIL-SOURI, Professor of Media, Culture, & Communication, NYU

From Academy Award nominated director Julian Schnabel and based on the autobiographical novel of Palestinian journalist Rula Jebreal, Miral tells the story of three generations of Palestinian women as they navigate the complexities of life after the creation of the state of Israel. Shot in Jerusalem, the film charts decades of history, from the onset of Israel’s occupation to the start of the “peace process.” Miral provides an unprecedented lens on Palestinian stories as told through Palestinian voices and experiences. Schnabel and Jebreal will discuss the political, historical, and artistic context of the movie, including the difficulties of making a movie about Palestine for the mainstream American audience.

Seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis. This event is sponsored by The Center for Palestine Studies. Co-sponsored by the Middle East Institute and Columbia Film School Carla Kuhn Series. To learn more about the Miral, please visit:


When: 7 p.m. Tuesday,
March 29, 2011
Where: The Pomegranate Gallery, 133 Greene Street, NY, NY 10012
Price: Free of charge
About the event: Join The Hour of Sunlight co-author Jen Marlowe as she reads from and discusses her new book, written with and about Sami Al Jundi. (Sami will be “in the room” via video.) The Hour of Sunlight describes Sami Al Jundi’s extraordinary metamorphosis from a militant to a passionate advocate of nonviolence and peaceful reconciliation.  The Hour of Sunlight offers a perspective that is sorely missing from the mainstream media’s portrayal of Palestinians. Marked by honesty, humor, pain, and, ultimately, compassion for all Palestinians and Israelis, The Hour of Sunlight charts an inspiring journey of perseverance and personal transformation. In so doing it illuminates the Palestinian experience through the story of one man’s impassioned struggle for Middle East peace.
Click here to buy the book.

2. DIWAN: A Forum for the Arts

When: March 25-26, 2011
The Graduate Center, The City University of New York, 365 Fifth Avenue, NY, NY 10016
All programs are free and open to the public.
About the Program:
DIWAN: A Forum for the Arts is a biennial program of the Arab American National Museum (AANM). DIWAN unites Arab American artists, scholars and performers representing myriad academic fields and artistic genres for a weekend dialogue that reinforces the AANM’s commitment to providing a place for community members and artists to meet, exchange ideas and exhibit their work. DIWAN also encourages audiences to expore the boundaries of art in addressing social issues related to Arab Americans and the community at large.
This year’s program features artists Andrea Assa, Ibtisam Barakat, Leila Buck, Randa Jarrar, Khaled Mattawa, Kareem Roustom and many more!
Click here for the detailed schedule.


The Center for Palestine Studies at Columbia University Presents
DREAMS OF A NATION: a palestinian film festival (Feb 2 – 6, 2011)

Wednesday, Feb. 2nd:

Pomegranates and Myrrh – Al Murr wal Rumann: Najwa Najjar (95 min), 8:00 – 9:45 pm
* Director Najwa Najjar and actress Hiam Abbas in attendance.
Set in modern-day Ramallah, when Zaid is detained in an Israeli prison, sparks fly between his new wife and her dance choreographer Kais, creating more than a passionate, emotional dance for the three of them. Yasmine Al Massri, Ashraf Farah, and Ali Suleiman star. In Arabic, English and Hebrew with English subtitles. 2009.
Location: International Affairs Building, Room 417 (Altschul Auditorium), 420 W. 118th St.

Thursday, Feb. 3rd:
The Land Speaks Arabic: Maryse Gargour (61min), 6:45 – 7:45 pm
Documents the founding of the Zionist movement and the expulsion of Palestinians in the early part of the 20th century, meaning that before Israel was created, there was a place called Palestine where people lived, and today continue to live, under occupation. In Arabic, English and Hebrew with English subtitles. 2007.
Location: Held Lecture Hall (3rd Floor), Barnard Hall (enter gates on 117th and Broadway)

Wedding in Galilee – Urs al Galeel: Michel Khleifi (110min), 8:00 – 9:15 pm
To throw his son a large traditional wedding, an older Palestinian man must seek Israeli permission to waive the curfew imposed on the village. Ironically, permission comes with a catch: the Israeli officers must attend the wedding. In Arabic, Hebrew and Turkish with English subtitles. 1987.
Location: Held Hall (3rd Floor), Barnard Hall (enter gates on 117th and Broadway)

Friday, Feb 4th:
The Roof: Kamal AlJafari (60 min), 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Returning to his parents’ and grandmother’s homes in Ramleh and Jaffa, now part of Israel, Aljafari uses graceful cinematography, unhurried rhythms, and a fragmented narrative to convey how space, time and history have been molded by conflict politics and Israeli institutionalized neglect.In Arabic and Hebrew with English subtitles. 2006.
Location: Alfred Lerner Hall, Room 569, 2920 Broadway

Be Quiet: Sameh Zoabi (18 min) + Since you Left: Mohammad Bakri (55 min), 7:30 – 9:00pm 
Be Quiet: What should be a simple car trip is beset by politically charged tension and a militarized reality — each of which serves as a foil to enhance the struggle of a complacent father raising a strong willed son. In Arabic and Hebrew with English subtitles. 2005.
Since You Left: A personal letter from Mohammad Bakri to his friend, the writer and politician Emile Habibi revolving around event that have taken place since his passing in 1996. In Arabic, English Hebrew with English subtitles. 2005.
Location: Schermerhorn, Room 501, 1190 Amsterdam Ave.

Saturday, Feb 5th:
End of September: Sama Alshaibi and Ala Younis (15 min) + Salt of this Sea – Milh haza al Bahr: Annemarie Jacir (109 min), 6:00 – 8:00 pm
End of September: Dalal, a female fadai (freedom fighter) returns to Palestine in shifts of time. Challenged by the results of the end of Israeli occupation, Dalal journeys through the Holy Land in search of fellow fedai Jad (Firas Taybeh). 2010.
Salt of this Sea: Born and raised in New York, Soraya (Suheir Hammad) is Palestinian and has long dreamed of returning to the land of her ancestors. When she learns that the money in her grandfather’s account (and all other Palestinian accounts at the bank) was forfeited after the establishment of the nation of Israel, she decides to take action. In Arabic and English with English subtitles. 2008.
Location: International Affairs Building, Room 417 (Altschul Auditorium), 420 West 118th Street

Cultural Event: Sahra Falastineyeh, 8:30 – 10:30 pm
Join us for an evening celebration of Palestinian culture through poetry, spoken work, traditional music and folk dance, and Palestinian cuisine.
Featuring: Live instrumental of the Oud and Shabbaba; Spoken word by Remi Kanazi & Dina Omar; Arabic poetry recited by Omar Khalifah; Debkeh performance.
Location: International Affairs Building, Kellogg Center, Room 1501, 420 West 118th Street

Sunday, Feb 6th:
Panel: Exploring Identity and Social History Through a Palestinian Lens, 2:30 – 4:00 pm
Panelists: Thomas Hill, Richard Pena and Helga Tawil-Souri.

Happy Days and Space Exodus: Larissa Sansour (10 min) In Space Exodus Sansour posits the idea of sending the first Palestinian into space and referencing Armstrong’s moon landing. Happy Days: A collage of footage shot on location in the occupied territories is accompanied by the theme music from the 70s sitcom Happy Days.
Location: Havemeyer Hall, Room 309, 3000 Broadway 

The Time that Remains – Al Zaman Al Baqi: Elia Suleiman (109 min), 5:00 – 7:00 pm
*Director Elia Suleiman will be in attendance.
Inspired by his father`s diaries, letters his mother sent to family members who fled the Israeli occupation, and the director’s own recollections, the film chronicles the tale of Suleiman`s family from 1948 until the present. In Arabic and Hebrew with English subtitles. 2009.
Location: Havemeyer Hall, Room 309, 3000 Broadway

For additional info, click here.

“Mainstreaming Gaza” was an afternoon of music and words featuring award-winning blogger/journalist Laila El-Haddad and pianist/musical director Rich Siegel. The sun kept peeking through Wollman Hall at The New School as attendees watched the mind-stimulating presentation and enjoyed an exquisite plate of Mujadara, a rice and lentil dish provided by City Gourmet. The December 4th event marked the end of Project Palestine’s semester-long series of events.

For event photos, click here.

Learn more:

  • Laila El-Haddad is the author of the new book, “Gaza Mom: Palestine, Politics, Parenting and Everything in Between.”
  • Rich Siegel is the singer of “In Palestine.”
  • City Gourmet is our marvelous food provider.

In just four months, Project Palestine grew from a nondescript student organization to a sophisticated New York City phenomenon. For all of you who attended and helped promote our events, thank you. We hope to see new and familiar faces during our upcoming spring series of events!

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