All in Language & Culture
This year, I again joined thousands of Palestinians and internationals in the 5th Palestine Marathon held in Bethlehem on April 1, 2017. The marathon is a symbolic call for freedom of movement, in opposition to the occupation’s heavy restrictions on movement that Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza endure.
Being a mother for the first time is such a surreal experience. You need some time to wrap your head around the idea that a little human being has come into this world and is fully and completely reliant on you. While it's a lot of pressure to handle, it's the most beautiful thing to know that you are nourishing and growing this baby and that you are the most essential part of their happiness.
Palestinians are a resilient people. Despite immense challenges they face, they are rising in the film industry, arts and other areas of pop culture. Through persistence, hard work and talent, they are winning headlines and awards, from local contests to world renowned contests like the Oscars. And as they get there, each side tries to gain ownership over their creations. Are they Israeli? Are they Palestinian? More importantly, how is their success perceived?
Have you ever thought about wifi password patterns? Recently, I’ve been thinking about this as I’ve noted a certain consistency in Palestinian password preferences. Here are a few common passwords Palestinians like to use. Whether you are in a private home or a restaurant in Palestine, I highly suspect it is one of the following:
In Palestinian culture, when someone dies, the customs surrounding mourning and condolences are separated by gender. The day of the funeral, the coffin is first brought to the women, and afterwards it is taken to the cemetery by the men where they say goodbye. It is a long day where family and friends join in and communally mourn together. The hours spent sitting and mourning include many moments of silence, contemplation, grief and some outbreaks of humor.
Have a look at the relatives chart of Palestinian families that could help you understand why Palestinians seemingly have so many cousins, and so many names for them.
I raise this issue and challenge you to ask yourself: Why are Palestinian Arabic speakers borrowing words from English, Hebrew, or other languages rather than using new Arabic words to express themselves?
1. You stare at the window for a few minutes and sing Fairuz's "shaty ya dinye shaty."
Each year as summer comes around many of us are inundated with invitations to attend weddings. Weddings are a wonderful time to joyfully celebrate and see people you haven’t seen in years. The customs in Israel, particularly for Jewish weddings, are unlike what I know in Europe or North America. Here are some pertinent facts to help you when you are invited to an Israeli wedding.
1. “You have been randomly selected for security check” EVERY time you travel!