Novelist Runo Isaksen, confronting the ongoing conflict in the Middle East, wanted to know: Can literature play a role in helping the one side to see the other? He interviewed fifteen preeminent Israeli and Palestinian writers, asking them what role literature may play in creating dialogue, ending war, building peace. The conversations that result are both deeply personal and deeply political, both reflective and urgent; they both complicate and clarify our understanding of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. The collection includes interviews with acclaimed Israeli writers David Grossman and Amos Oz (“In a conflict, few people are capable of imagining other people's suffering”). Palestinian novelist Sahar Khalifeh discusses feminism, literature, and occupation. Poet Mahmoud Darwish and novelist Izzat Ghazzawi appear together, discussing how “knowledge about the other is an obligation.” These dialogues transcend national boundaries and the narrow language of conflict and invite readers around the world to take a step toward peace.
Authors interviewed include: Liana Badr • Orly Castel-Bloom • Mahmoud Darwish • Izzat Ghazzawi • David Grossman • Yoram Kaniuk • Etgar Keret • Sahar Khalifeh • Zakariyya Muhammad • Salman Natour • Amos Oz • Dorit Rabinyan • Meir Shalev • Mahmoud Shuqair • Yahya Yakhlif • Ghassan ZaqtanISBN 9781566567305 • 256 pages • paperback • $18.00