Bawh بوح is a student-produced podcast based at Al-Quds Bard College in Palestine that taps into the transformative power of everyday people and their life stories. Every week, the podcast tunes into Palestine in all its shapes, sizes, sounds and textures.Bawh بوح Website
Amidst the uprising of 2021 when the Israeli government attempted to evict six families from occupied East Jerusalem, five students express what it means to strive for freedom.
Two young women share their experiences after their education is cut short by political imprisonment.
A Palestinian couple holding two different occupation IDs marry and give birth to a child who is rendered stateless as a result. Twenty-six years later, she still has no identity. This is her story.
Love, loss and resilience.
This is the story of two Palestinians who cross occupation checkpoints every day to make ends meet. How do they survive the daily hardships? What makes them persevere?
In commemoration of Yom al-Ard (Land Day), the Division of Humanities and Practicing Arts at Al-Quds Bard College, with support from the Experimental Humanities Collaborative Network (EHCN), hosted events across the month of March 2022 and March 2023 that honored the many shapes and forms in which Palestinians have sustained a powerful counternarrative over and against the Zionist narrative. The events explored how Palestinian experiences and histories have been communicated through creative practices as diverse as oral storytelling, fine arts, photography, digital media, social media, citizen journalism, filmmaking and literature. The symposium builds on the momentum of the Palestinians’ determination to narrate their own lives and experiences across platforms despite ongoing attempts at silencing.
Participants learned about the many ways in which Israeli settler colonialism threatens local and longstanding Palestinian olive groves and farms, as well as how Palestinian farmers and their allies are advocating for their rights. Students planted olive trees in support of local farmers, and joined farmers for an outdoor lunch. Facilitated by the Joint-Advocacy Initiative.
Activist and Poet Mohammad El-Kurd discussed the role of poetics and citizen journalism in advocating for justice and truth-telling amidst a climate of mis- and dis-information about Palestine. His activism envisions the future at the same time that it intervenes in the present. Q&A moderated by AQB alum, Dalia Alayassa. The featured speaker joined from abroad via video call.
As of 2021, 61% of Palestinian land in the West Bank is “off limits” for Palestinian use. This does not include the 150 illegal Israeli settlements and 128 illegal Israeli outposts that have been established in the West Bank since 1967. Furthermore, there are 593 Israeli roadblocks and checkpoints obstructing Palestinian movement in the West Bank, most of them aimed to protect illegal Israeli settlers. These realities on the ground make it very difficult for Palestinians to enjoy and learn about their local ecology. Many young Palestinians would never venture out on a hike alone, since they could be attacked at any time by Israeli settlers or detained by Israeli Forces. Every year, AQB “takes back” these ecological spaces by offering guided group hikes that allow students to learn about the flora and fauna of their homeland safely. (Sources: UN OCHA Area C, 2021; “Report on UNCTAD Assistance to the Palestinian People: Developments in the Economy of the Occupied Palestinian Territory” Aug 2020; UN OCHA “Occupied Palestinian Territory (oPt) Humanitarian Needs Overview 2021” Dec 2020).
March 16th, 2023
Students learned about Palestine’s biodiversity and the struggle to protect and cultivate Palestine’s heirloom seeds and olive groves. Participants hiked (6 km) in a UNESCO world heritage site, and learned about Palestinian farming practices, past and present. Facilitated by the Palestine Heirloom Seed Library and Dar Yusuf Nasri Jacir for Art and Research.
March 21st, 2023
Students embarked on a beautiful 16 kilometer hike through Wadi Qelt, where they had a chance to learn about the ruins of King Herod’s winter palace, the rocky canyon Deir al-Qelt (St. George’s Monastery), the Roman aqueduct, the Jordan Valley, and the historic road from Jericho to Jerusalem and back to sea level. Students not only get a chance to bask in Palestine’s nature, but also learned about how the Palestine Heritage Trail is supporting Palestinian heritage, arts and culture along the trail. Students also had a chance to view Jericho’s agricultural diversity from above on the cable car. Hosted by Palestine Heritage Trail.
World renowed artist, Sliman Mansour, discussed the role of the arts in shedding light on the Palestinian movement for liberation as well as inspiring people to keep hope alive. He discussed the narrative arc of his own work from the 1970s until today. Q&A moderated by Rawan Sharaf.
In memory of Shireen Abu Akleh’s life and work, the Humanities and Practicing Arts Division at Al-Quds Bard College inaugurated the first annual “Shireen Abu Akleh Senior Project Grant.” The grant provides awardees with modest financial support to complete SP projects that are in the spirit of Ms. Abu Akleh’s commitment to “boldly tell the story of the diversity and magnitude of the human experience.”
Noora Baker, Head of Production at El-Funoun Palestinian Popular Dance Troupe, and member since 1987, discussed the history, vision and mission of El-Funoun, charting its role in reviving Palestinian dance and music folklore since its inception in 1979, as well as in creating new forms of movement and dance that are unique to Palestine.
Acclaimed photographers Tanya Habjouqa and Wahaj Bani Muflih discussed how they use photography to tell the stories of Palestine and its people. The artists’ work was on exhibition from Sunday, March 27th - Sunday, April 2nd, 2022 at Al-Quds Bard College. Tanya Habjouqa joined from abroad via video call.
Students visited the Sakiya nature reserve and academy with agronomist and community educator, Mary Diek. During their field visit, students learned how to make shelters out of prickly pear leaves, and in general, learned about local agrarian traditions of self-sufficiency and food production, toured the exhibition hall, and explored the intersections of art, science and permaculture.
The Creative Expression Initiative focuses on catering to the mental health crisis in Palestine through the use of Art Therapy, Meditation, Self-expressive painting, Self-reflection, and the use of connecting nature to the many aspects of our daily lives. The Creative Expression Initiative celebrated Earth Day through a special 2-day event under the title of Resistance through Art Expression and Media Coverage, the first day took place in the AQU garden around the campus area where students gathered natural elements like rocks, sticks, and leaves and showed their appreciation to the Palestinian Earth by reflecting their identities through painting on the natural elements and creating unique are pieces that involve the Palestinian flag colors.
In May 2023, we held our 4th annual AQB Arts Showcase in Ramallah's Old City for an action-packed program of films, creative writing, multimedia, music and fine arts produced by our students, staff and faculty at AQB. We had over 80 people attend the arts crawl across three venues, and featured over 30 artists from AQB. This event has become a cherished AQB tradition that allows our community’s creativity to shine.