Biography of Gabi Baramki and His Odyssey at Birzeit University (1929–2012)

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This is an autobiography that chronicles the history of the institution established by the Palestinian Nasser family, on behalf of the Palestinian national movement. It is the history of the inauguration of an academic, cultural and political lever of the national project put forward by the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO): Birzeit  University. This a biography whose title and body combine Gabi Baramki and Birzeit  University to tell the story of the gatekeeper of the Palestinian cultural project and its orientation in one of its most prominent enlightenment centers. It thus reflects the uniqueness of the individual experience, as well as the collective experience - that of the inauguration of the Birzeit  University as a Palestinian national institution under the Zionist settler colonialism in Palestine, at the academic, research and society levels. In the biography of Baramki, who died before its completion, these unique aspects meet together, in a story told by a man who witnessed this uniqueness, moment by moment, since its inception. Since Bramki (1929-2012) has witnessed the four stages of the University's genesis (under British colonial mandate, Jordanian rule, Zionist colonialism and Palestinian authority), these memoirs are a rare contribution to the records of the Palestinian political, social and cultural history, since it is singular in the plural form. Because the book is not only about the biography of Baramki, or of Birzeit  as a university, or of Birzeit  town and its social history between Jerusalem, Ramallah and North Palestine... it is rather the history of Palestine and the higher education there; it is the story of the resistance to the Zionist settler colonialism and the Israeli military occupation throughout four stages of the history of the Palestinian people.

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About the Author(s)

Abdul Rahim SHIEKH:is a poet and academician from Jerusalem. He is a professor of philosophy and cultural and Arabic studies at Birzeit University. His research work focuses on nationalism and identity politics (especially their audiovisual expressions, in theory and in practice) in a colonial context, in addition to his essays about art criticism, Arabic poetry and translation. His latest book "The Columbus Syndrome and Exploration of Palestine: Policies of the Israeli appellation of the Palestinian scene and the counter-Palestinian linguistic engineering" will be published in 2015 by the Institute for Palestine Studies.


Institute for Palestine Studies
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