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Camping in the Third Space: Agency, Representation, and the Politics of Gaza Beach

Camping in the Third Space: Agency, Representation, and the Politics of Gaza Beach Laura Junka just returned from a nearby cafeteria with ice cream and sweets to share with her friends. Making the best of a summer under siege, she and the other women affirm joy and the aesthetics of life in Gaza Beach (see fig. 1). This image brings forth the hoping Palestinian subject, whose space of enunciation has, during the intifada al-Aqsa, become increasingly marginal and unrecognizable within dominant discourses on conflict. The images presented here of Jawaheer and other Palestinians camping on the beach were produced in response to several questions and concerns surrounding the politics of representation of Palestinian agency. First, why has the second Palestinian uprising, the intifada al-Aqsa, been characterized by increasingly polarized and dichotomous representations of the Palestinians? In these representations, the political subjectivity of the Palestinians tends to be portrayed either in terms of Islamic militancy and suicide or in terms of passive victimhood. Second, what forms of Palestinian political subjectivity and agency exist today beyond these narrow parameters of militancy and victimhood? And third, to what extent can these other, subaltern aspects of Palestinian subjectivity be represented? In other words, if representation is, as Gayatri Spivak argues, always conditioned My greatest gratitude http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Public Culture Duke University Press

Camping in the Third Space: Agency, Representation, and the Politics of Gaza Beach

Public Culture , Volume 18 (2) – Apr 1, 2006

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2006 by Duke University Press
ISSN
0899-2363
eISSN
1527-8018
DOI
10.1215/08992363-2006-007
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Laura Junka just returned from a nearby cafeteria with ice cream and sweets to share with her friends. Making the best of a summer under siege, she and the other women affirm joy and the aesthetics of life in Gaza Beach (see fig. 1). This image brings forth the hoping Palestinian subject, whose space of enunciation has, during the intifada al-Aqsa, become increasingly marginal and unrecognizable within dominant discourses on conflict. The images presented here of Jawaheer and other Palestinians camping on the beach were produced in response to several questions and concerns surrounding the politics of representation of Palestinian agency. First, why has the second Palestinian uprising, the intifada al-Aqsa, been characterized by increasingly polarized and dichotomous representations of the Palestinians? In these representations, the political subjectivity of the Palestinians tends to be portrayed either in terms of Islamic militancy and suicide or in terms of passive victimhood. Second, what forms of Palestinian political subjectivity and agency exist today beyond these narrow parameters of militancy and victimhood? And third, to what extent can these other, subaltern aspects of Palestinian subjectivity be represented? In other words, if representation is, as Gayatri Spivak argues, always conditioned My greatest gratitude

Journal

Public CultureDuke University Press

Published: Apr 1, 2006

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