Divine Intervention By Elia Suleiman

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Palestinian identity has lasted the test of time through exile, diaspora, and attempts at cultural white-washing. It is through these situations that Palestine has created a unique sense of identity, unlike many nation-states. The Palestinian identity has come to transcend borders, nationality, and mediums. It is not only represented in politics and protest, but in personal expression and the arts. This paper argues that both national identity and cultural productions of Palestine represent the diaspora through noticeable adaptation based on location and support the idea that Palestinian identity isn't singularly definable. The first piece of evidence that I will analyze is the movie Divine Intervention (2002), directed by Elia Suleiman.…show more content…
In this case rather than a long plot, this film has a central character that is named E.S, and that is played by the director himself. Through the film, we see that much of the main story surrounds the relationship that E.S has with a presumably Palestinian woman. Over the course of the film we see E.S meeting with his lover at an Israeli checkpoint, holding hands, and interacting through their silence. At one point in the film we see a red balloon with the face of Yasser Arafat (who at the time is the chairman of the PLO and the president of the PNA) which is released by E.S to distract the soldiers as it floats over the checkpoint, ensuring the E.S and his lover are able to make it through the checkpoint together. His lover ultimately leaves him, and near the end of the film we see 5 soldiers fighting the woman in a ninja fight scene, where it alludes that the woman is fighting against the…show more content…
One particularly interesting perspective is his opinion on how the conflict has somewhat freed the identity of Palestinians from a shared land, and that for some Palestinians that can escape the occupation, there is a the creation of a transnational, transgressive life. (Suleiman, 2003, 73) Thus exists multiple outcomes from one identity. He further supports this by commenting that Palestine does not have borders, does not actually exist in the sense of geography, but it still has a sense of space. The Palestinian people are this space, and the people are how we define what is, and what is not Palestine. People are separated geographically, but defined by identity and community, and this creates a unique sense of freedom outside of a defined nation-state. (Suleiman, 2000, 96) This lets the definition of this identity be more fluid. He says that in his work he purposefully moves away from a centralized view of Palestinian identity and uses cinema to present the differences in viewpoint, perception, and narration that exist within this conflict. Not only between Israelis and Palestinian's but between all Palestinian's. (Suleiman, 2000, 97) He purposefully moves away from a singular form of Palestinian identity and states “My films are Palestinian because I am Palestinian.” (Suleiman, 2000, 99) This movement from a
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