You may have heard that the conflict between Israel and Palestine has gone on for HUNDREDS OF YEARS. In reality, the conflict that we hear about today is relatively young, and the present day issues actually begin around 1947. The main issues lingering that still need to be addressed and reconciled are: mutual recognition, borders, security, water rights, control of Jerusalem, Israeli settlements, Palestinian freedom of movement and legalities concerning refugees. Today the struggle for right to the land in its entirety continues, with little to no understanding or empathy from either political side to find solutions for the “other people” in the region who are not willing to leave “their land.”
We investigate the history between Israel and Palestine -- a connection between two sets of people and cultures -- through film and the arts. While conflict is one aspect of the relationship, we also highlight the bigger picture, the people, the human stories. We believe that in this relationship, like in any relationship, there is room for growth, understanding and, most importantly, respect. The history between Israel and Palestine is long and complicated, but film is a powerful vehicle for fostering awareness and change.
We have highlighted existing films through our Underground Film Series and received new submissions through our New Works Project that aim to bring a sensitive and critical lens to the real cost of this conflict, the human cost. By sharing these stories with a wider audience, we hope to foster understanding and empathy which will inspire more people to engage with this issue and help lead the way towards a solution.
Here are some thoughts on 3 powerful films from one of our past film series and the human stories they tell from Art With Impact President Cary McQueen Morrow:
‘The power of the film comes from its lack of preaching, instead engaging the viewer in a simple story of hardships that arise from any clash of cultures and the hopeful suggestions that, when we are more open to talk to each other, some of these issues can be resolved.’
Slingshot Hip Hop
‘Human responses to injustice can be unpredictable. People shut down, they rise up, they become apathetic. But sometimes people make something beautiful out of something ugly. They speak out and voice their pain in imaginative ways. They communicate their struggle without hurting anyone else. When they do, they create art, and art has the power to change the world by opening minds.’
‘If finding a peaceful solution for Israel and Palestine were easy, it would be done. Politics, military actions, popular demonstrations, have all been used. Ultimately, a solution will depend on us -- a global community -- working together with understanding and respect for all the people involved.’
If you wish to know what more you can do, here are some options: