Wishful Landscapes: Protest and Spatial Reclamation in Jaffa
- Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East
- Duke University Press
- Volume 39, Number 2, August 2019
- pp. 313-327
- View Citation
- Additional Information
The article, based on two years of fieldwork, examines the meaning of displacement for Palestinian citizens of Israel who live in Jaffa. Specifically, it focuses on one key site, the Clock Tower Square, historically a hub of Palestinian urban economy. The discussion follows a group of local Palestinian activists who consciously chose the square to stage protests, thus reclaiming Arab Jaffa's material heritage and directly challenging recent histories of spatial expropriation by the Israeli state, the Tel Aviv municipality, and real estate developers. The analysis below also proposes a multiscalar understanding of these protests as a reclamation of Jaffa's Arab heritage as well as an act of remapping the nation and its colonized homeland. In this sense, the Clock Tower Square activists produce "wishful landscapes" that work to undermine the colonizer's project of normalizing occupation.