Book Size: 7.5" x 9.5"

Pages: 550

Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781566567879


Imprint: Olive Branch Press

Edition: 1

Editor: Lena Jayyusi

Illustrations: b&w and color illustrations and maps

Release date: 03/15/15

Categories: ,

Jerusalem Interrupted

Modernity and Colonial Transformation 1917 - Present


$ 30


“Focusing on the city which many consider to lie at the heart of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, this book presents a panorama of real life in Arab Jerusalem, particularly during the British Mandate years —and how it abruptly changed in 1948. ” — Jordan Times

About this book

Details often unexplored social and political dimensions of Jerusalem.

Most histories of twentieth-century Jerusalem published in English focus on the city's Jewish life and neighborhoods; this book offers a crucial balance to that history. On the eve of the British Mandate in 1917, Jerusalem Arab society was rooted, diverse, and connected to other cities, towns, and the rural areas of Palestine. A cosmopolitan city, Jerusalem saw a continuous and dynamic infusion of immigrants and travelers, many of whom stayed and made the city theirs. Over the course of the three decades of the Mandate, Arab society in Jerusalem continued to develop a vibrant, networked, and increasingly sophisticated milieu. No one then could have imagined the radical rupture that would come in 1948, with the end of the Mandate and the establishment of the State of Israel. This groundbreaking collection of essays brings together distinguished scholars and writers and follows the history of Jerusalem from the culturally diverse Mandate period through its transformation into a predominantly Jewish city.

Essays detail often unexplored dimensions of the social and political fabric of a city that was rendered increasingly taut and fragile, even as areas of mutual interaction and shared institutions and neighborhoods between Arabs and Jews continued to develop.

Contributors include: Lena Jayyusi, Issam Nassar, Samia A. Halaby, Elias Sahhab, Andrea Stanton, Makram Khoury-Machool, Sandy Sufian, Awad Halabi, Ellen L. Fleischmann, Widad Kawar, Rochelle Davis, Subhi Ghosheh, Mohammad Ghosheh, Tom Abowd, Nadia Abu El-Haj, Michael Dumper, Nahed Awwad, Ahmad J. Azem, Nasser Abourahme.


About the author

Lena Jayyusi is a professor in the College of Communication and Media Sciences on the Dubai campus of Zayed University. A renowned translator of Arabic fiction, she has also published works on the role of Palestinian broadcasting, Palestinian media during the Oslo peace process, the globalization of human rights discourse, and the role of media in democracy.


“Focusing on the city which many consider to lie at the heart of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, this book presents a panorama of real life in Arab Jerusalem, particularly during the British Mandate years — and how it abruptly changed in 1948. Comprising essays by 19 different scholars, Jerusalem Interrupted has in-depth coverage of a broad range of fields and issues, reflecting the diversity and development that was once a hallmark of the city. High-quality, historical and current photos and maps complement the well-researched essays. Taken as a whole, the book provides a comprehensive picture with a good balance between detail and general observation… While there are many accounts of Palestine’s modern political history, it is only in recent times that the country’s social and cultural history has been properly addressed in English-language books. Jerusalem Interrupted is a substantial, new contribution to this latter type of history, which has rich political implications for understanding the past and working to chart a different future.” — Jordan Times

“This volume of 18 original essays plus the editor’s introduction is in two parts: the years of the British Mandate and the period since 1948. Generally, the first part is cultural anthropology and social history, and the second is political geography. The scope is wide: archaeology, art and handcrafts, photography, music, health, memoir, festivals, and historical incidents. Written by artists and academic scholars (most are Palestinians, many living in Canada, the US, or Europe), the chapters focus on the vibrant, diverse, and commingling religious and ethnic population of Jerusalem’s first decades of the 20th century and the emerging sense of (Christian and Muslim) Palestinian nationhood. Part 2 chronicles (with maps) the rupture of 1948 and subsequent acts of Israel that ‘aborted the project of an indigenous Arab modernity in the city.’ In the constructivist perspective, essays document both a nearly lost narrative of Jerusalem’s Arab past and “the Zionist project of transforming Jerusalem into a Jewish city” at both the physical and subjective levels. Especially interesting are essays on the political mobilization of women during the British Mandate period and historical photos, e.g., those of the once-active Jerusalem airport in the occupied West Bank. Summing Up: Recommended. Most levels/libraries.” — CHOICE