Palestinian Walks (Paperback)

Notes on a Vanishing Landscape

Raja Shehadeh

Winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Writing 2008

Over two decades of turmoil and change in the Middle East, steered via the history-soaked landscape of Palestine. This new edition includes a previously unpublished epigraph in the form of a walk.

When Raja Shehadeh first started hill walking in Palestine, in the late 1970s, he was not aware that he was travelling through a vanishing landscape. These hills would have seemed familiar to Christ, until the day concrete was poured over the flora and irreversible changes were brought about by those who claim a superior love of the land.

Six walks span a period of twenty-six years, in the hills around Ramallah, in the Jerusalem wilderness and through the ravines by the Dead Sea. Each walk takes place at a different stage of Palestinian history since 1982, the first in the empty pristine hills and the last amongst the settlements and the wall. The reader senses the changing political atmosphere as well as the physical transformation of the landscape.

By recording how the land felt and looked before these calamities, Raja Shehadeh attempts to preserve, at least in words, the Palestinian natural treasures that many Palestinians will never know.

Publication date: 22/05/2008

£8.99

ISBN: 9781861978998

Imprint: Profile Books

Subject: Travel & Nature

Palestinian Walks (Ebook)

Notes on a Vanishing Landscape

Raja Shehadeh

Winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Writing 2008

Over two decades of turmoil and change in the Middle East, steered via the history-soaked landscape of Palestine. This new edition includes a previously unpublished epigraph in the form of a walk.

When Raja Shehadeh first started hill walking in Palestine, in the late 1970s, he was not aware that he was travelling through a vanishing landscape. These hills would have seemed familiar to Christ, until the day concrete was poured over the flora and irreversible changes were brought about by those who claim a superior love of the land.

Six walks span a period of twenty-six years, in the hills around Ramallah, in the Jerusalem wilderness and through the ravines by the Dead Sea. Each walk takes place at a different stage of Palestinian history since 1982, the first in the empty pristine hills and the last amongst the settlements and the wall. The reader senses the changing political atmosphere as well as the physical transformation of the landscape.

By recording how the land felt and looked before these calamities, Raja Shehadeh attempts to preserve, at least in words, the Palestinian natural treasures that many Palestinians will never know.

Publication date: 09/07/2010

£8.99

ISBN: 9781847651297

ISBN 10 / ASIN: B0031WHC1E

Imprint: Profile Books

Subject: Travel & Nature

Reviews for Palestinian Walks

'Shehadeh does a tremendous job ... one of the most compelling things you will read this summer.'

 Scotland on Sunday

'He distills his pain and anger into eloquent prose, meticulously counting the ways he loves the land ... Palestinian Walks is no trite exercise in myth-making or propaganda.'

 Sunday Tribune

'Shehadeh is always engaging ... delivering what many activists neglect to mention: the odd, slightly absurd details that really touch people; things that appear off camera, away from news reports.'

 Independent on Sunday

'An important testament to political failure, never more relevant than today.'

Anthony Sattin Time Out

'A new geography has come into being. This beautiful book is not just a guide to the Palestinian present; it is an Israeli album of what is taking place in a faraway land: Palestine.'

 Ha'aretz

'Few Palestinians have opened their minds and hearts with such frankness'

 New York Book Review

'Shehadeh writes beautifully, his language infused with a lyrical, melancholic sense of loss. An important record of a land marked by conflict that is changing everyday'

 Sunday Telegraph

'Towards any proper understanding of history there are many small paths. I strongly suggest you walk with him.'

John Berger 

'Palestinian Walks is a stoic account of a particular place, but one which has universal resonance. The judges felt it made landscape into the essence of politics, and political writing into an art'

John seaton, chair of the Orwell Prize committee, 2008 

'Shehadeh describes howthe destruction of a beloved landscape mirrors the damage to Palestinian identity...lyrical nature-writing with understated political passion'

 Guardian

'Palestinian Walks provides a rare historical insight into the tragic changes taking place in Palestine.'

Jimmy Carter 

'This is a beautiful book and a sad one.'

Anthony Lewis 

'Readers... would do well to reckon with the painful particulars of Shehadeh's account, which is at once gentle and angry, resolute and realistic.'

 The Nation

Raja Shehadeh

Raja Shehadeh

Raja Shehadeh is Palestine's leading writer. He is also a lawyer and the founder of the pioneering Palestinian human rights organisation Al-Haq. Shehadeh is the author of several acclaimed books including Strangers in the House and Occupation Diaries and winner of the 2008 Orwell Prize for Palestinian Walks (all Profile). He lives in Ramallah in Palestine.

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