|Determined to stay : Palestinian youth fight for their village|
Author: Sokolower, Jody
As Silwani youth and community members share their lives with us, their village becomes an easily accessible way to understand Palestinian history and current reality. Written with young people in mind, the richly illustrated text stresses connections between the lives of youth in the US and Palestine: criminalization of youth, forced relocation, the impact of colonialism on Indigenous communities, efforts to bury history, and inspiring examples of resistance and resilience.
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 05/15/2021 *Starred Review* Sokolower, a white, Jewish high-school social studies teacher from California, visited Palestine to try to understand the ongoing conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians. In a number of visits between 2012 and 2019, she interviewed children and teenagers from Silwan, a Palestinian village south of the Old City in Jerusalem, about their lives there. She honestly tells young readers that her reporting isn’t “‘even-handed’ about what was happening in Silwan.” She “felt strongly that the Palestinians were fighting against a clear injustice.” The harrowing and heartbreaking true stories told by the Palestinian children reveal the obvious parallels between the treatment of Indigenous people by the U.S. government in the past and the current racial injustices, especially toward Black people, prevalent in the U.S. now: one Palestinian boy discusses how his friend was arrested because the Israelis assumed his broken ruler was a weapon. Despite their struggles, these Palestinian youth are resilient and determined to fight to stay in Silwan. Their stories will elicit empathy and outrage at the unfairness of their treatment. Supplementary matter includes an introduction by Nick Estes, who is Lower Brule Sioux, as well as black-and-white photos, maps, and footnotes that contain definitions of Islamic sayings. Necessary reading that is highly recommended. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.