Signs of Life under Occupation: Tel Aviv to oPT

September 12, 3:00pm - 4:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Kuykendall 410 Add to Calendar

Signs of Life under Occupation: What I Learned Traveling from Tel Aviv through the oPt

Last May, as a participant in a Faculty Development Seminar, I traveled with nine other U.S. professors to the West Bank. Part of a region where every millimeter comprises contested space, this land, together with Gaza, is referred to by the United Nations and other international bodies as the Occupied Palestinian Territories, or oPt—Palestinian land under Israeli Occupation. Over the course of our eleven days in the oPt, our group met with students and faculty members from five different Palestinian universities, toured refugee camps, visited various organizations, and participated in cultural events in East Jerusalem, Ramallah, Nablus, Abu Dis, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Jericho.

For this talk, I will share my experiences traveling and, upon my return, beginning work on a co-edited BIOGRAPHY issue on “Life in Occupied Palestine.” I will reflect on ways I can bring what I learned into my teaching, research, and participation in UH and non-academic communities, and invite broader discussion of how and why those of us at UH can put Palestine on the map of where we live.

Cynthia Franklin teaches in the English Department at UH-M and co-edits the journal Biography. Her publications include Academic Lives: Memoir, Cultural Theory and the University Today, and Writing Women's Communities: The Politics and Poetics of Contemporary Multi-Genre Anthologies. With her colleague Laura Lyons, she has co-authored articles and co-edited a special issue of Biography, "Personal Effects: The Testimonial Uses of Life Writing." She is currently working on a project that explores, through analysis of life writing texts that have been at the center of public controversy, how the human gets defined through and sometimes against a set of related terms—the civil, civility, civilization, and citizenship.

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English, Mānoa Campus

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