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still Why (Monica Maurer, 1982)

I Laugh Because I Know They Can't Kill Me

Songs and Scenes from Palestine: I Laugh Because I Know They Can't Kill Me

In his lecture Mohanad Yaqubi, programmer at the Palestine Film Institute, breaks the stereotyping of the Palestine people. He reveals a systematic blindness to the existence of the Palestinian communities and its culture. 

poster Songs and Scenes from Palestine: I Laugh Because I Know They Can't Kill Me

Mohanad Yaqubi demonstrates using archival footage that it was predominately makers from other cultures who determined what was filmed and what left out of shot. This meant that Palestinians themselves were not really seen. And invisible people can easily be dehumanised and disappear.

The visualisation of Palestine has been formed around the holy landscape of the scriptures, mixed with the mystic orient of fantasies. Yaqubi makes us aware of the images imprinted in our minds. In the past Palestinians have all too often appeared as interchangeable, silent extras. Yaqubi regains the right to speak about their divided past and the picture of them that has been painted.

This lecture investigates the history of image production around Palestine, to understand and position Palestinian cinema in the context of struggle against disappearance, at the same time, championing Palestinian filmmakers who have been experimenting resistance through forms, structures and aesthetics, breaking the barrier, brick by brick, through their films for the past 70 years, as a way of struggle, a cinematic one.

Mohanad Yaqubi

Born in Kuwait 1981 for a Palestinian father and Syrian mother, he grows up hearing the stories of the destruction of his hometown Al-Majdal from his grandparents, who were ethnically cleanse from there after the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 and resided at an UNRWA Refugee camp in Gaza. Yaqubi is a filmmaker, producer and one of the founders of Idioms Film, an Arthouse production based in Ramallah since 2004, he is also a member of Subversive Film, a curatorial collective that seeks to research and redistribute militant cinema from Palestine and beyond. He is a resident researcher at KASK school of the Arts, Ghent since 2017.


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90 min.

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Eye on Art

Eye on Art is a programme on the intersection between film and other arts. Eye on Art keeps up with current events, with presentations on contemporary artists and programmes that coincide with important exhibitions, manifestations and Eye activities.

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still from Cloacinae Serge Onnen & Sverre Fredriksen, NL 2017)
still We are the Palestinian People (Newsreel, 1972)
still Why (Monica Maurer, 1982)
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