A Young Palestinian's Diary, 1941-1945: The Life of Sami by Kimberly Katz, Salim Tamari

By Kimberly Katz, Salim Tamari

Writing in his past due children and early twenties, Sami'Amr gave his diary an apt subtitle: "The conflict of Life", encapsulating either the political weather of Palestine within the waning years of the British Mandate in addition to the contrasting joys and issues of kinfolk lifestyles. Now translated from the Arabic, Sami's diary represents a unprecedented artefact of turbulent swap within the center East. Written over 4 years, those ruminations of a tender guy from Hebron brim with revelations approximately everyday life opposed to a backdrop of super transition. Describing the general public and the personal, the fashionable and the conventional, Sami muses on relationships, his station in lifestyles, and different common studies whereas sharing various information about a pivotal second in Palestine's glossy heritage. Making those never-before-published reflections to be had in translation, Kimberly Katz additionally offers illuminating context for Sami's phrases, laying out biographical info of Sami, who stored his diary inner most for just about sixty years. one in all a constrained variety of Palestinian diaries on hand to English-language readers, the diary of Sami'Amr bridges major chasms in our knowing of center jap, and especially Palestinian, heritage.

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Extra resources for A Young Palestinian's Diary, 1941-1945: The Life of Sami 'Amr (Jamal and Rania Daniel Series in Contemporary History, Politics, Culture, and Religion of the Levant)

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When he died, Ruqayya noted, their mother sold off land owned by the family to make ends meet. Ruqayya added that her mother would sell her jewelry at the time of the Muslim feasts to provide for the family. 18 In an Arab family unit, a child is considered orphaned when his or her father, the male head of the family, the breadwinner, dies. In this patriarchal society, Arab Christians and Muslims see the fatherless child as no longer having a protector and provider, something Sāmī clearly felt and expressed in his diary.

He lost his job with the arrival of the British when he refused to cooperate with them, at which point the family wealth began to decline. As an official, Saʿīd ibn Yaḥyā had a good salary; as an unemployed opponent of the new rulers, he did not find work and began to sell what he had in order to provide for his family. When he died, Ruqayya noted, their mother sold off land owned by the family to make ends meet. Ruqayya added that her mother would sell her jewelry at the time of the Muslim feasts to provide for the family.

In an email dated 22 January 2006 Samīr relates the following about the family’s history during that period: My father was groomed to have a good administrative position at the Ministry of Interior. In 1964, he was sent to the American University of Beirut (AUB) for one full year to study government and administration, and obtained a diploma. ” He had a rotation in Cardiff, Wales to see how this was applied in practice. In 1966 he was appointed assistant to the Governor of ʿAmman. In 1969, a former Director of the Jordanian Intelligence Department (al-Mukhābarāt) was appointed as the new Minister of Interior at a period of intense political instability with upheavals and confrontations in Jordan between the Jordanian Government and its Army on the one hand and the PLO [Palestine Liberation Organization] fighters and their leadership on the other.

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