martedì 7 aprile 2015

Into the Promised Land: Photo-essay Portraying Palestinian Life in the West Bank and Gaza Strip by John Tordai (Photographer)

A portrait of the people of Palestine showing not only the turmoil of the Arab-Israeli conflict but also scenes from a daily life which has been characterised by over twenty years of military occupation.

For almost twenty five years the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza Strip have endured military occupation and, at the same time, have watched the creeping annexation of their patrimony, much of it given over to settlements. Such pressure led inexorably to the intifada and these photographs, taken between 1988 – 90, roughly span the period wich began with a popular uprising and ended in attrition. They reflect broadly what could be found on the streets any day of the week, evoking both the unchanging rhythms of daily life as well as the pathos and desolation wich, inevitably, have grown out of this enduring conflict. If a lasting peace were achieved, the photographs might be seen only as a painful episode in the rites of passage, but given the depth of the conflict they might as easily be viewed as the preface to a descent into perdition.

 Text by J.C.Tordai %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%
Authors: text by Harvey Morris, Photographs by J.C.Tordai 
Publisher: CORNERHOUSE Publications Year: 1991 
Number of pages: 80 %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%


John Tordai has been photographing Palestinians for twenty years. He was in Gaza in the early 1980s, before it became the haunt of journalists and TV crews. He returned during the exhilarating early months of the first Palestinian intifada – when all seemed possible – and stuck around as the uprising sank into a mire of Israeli siege, Palestinian violence, and political stalemate. He was in place to watch the entrée of the “peace process,” as embodied by the return of Yasser Arafat and the remnants of the Palestine Liberation Organization to Gaza in 1994 and the slow, deformed birth of the Palestinian Authority. And he was there again in September 2000 when that artifice finally collapsed amid the blood, arms, and death of the Intifadat al Aqsa, the second Palestinian national revolt in less than a decade.