Gaza was often called as ‘Ghazzat’ by the ancient Egyptians which means ‘Prized City’. The place once lived upto that meaning with beautiful beaches, the adjoining Mediterranean Sea and wonderful climate. But the terrible history of destruction, plagues, floods, earthquakes, and the many wars have now created a completely different Gaza. Gaza has been ruled, destroyed and then rebuilt, conquered again and again. A number of books have been written on the History of Gaza and lives of the Gazans – Take your pick!
Gaza: A History written by Jean-Pierre Filiu is said to be the first comprehensive book on the history of Gaza in any language. Surrounded by Negev desert, Sinai desert and the Mediterranean Sea, Gaza was contested by the Pharaohs, the Persians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Arabs, the Fatimids, the Mamluks, the Crusaders and the Ottomans. The book set to release in mid August is a must read if you want complete background and details of Gaza; as was in the past, in the present and what may seem to take place in the future.
Gideon Levy in his book ‘The Punishment of Gaza’ takes readers through a journey from 2005—the year of Gaza’s “liberation”—through to 2009 tracking the development of Israel’s policy and its impact on Palestinians living in Gaza; making Gaza as the world’s largest open-air prison. It’s a compilation of 40 pieces of his weekly columns as a journalist from Haaretz (Israel’s most influential daily newspaper).
‘Meet Me in Gaza is an evocative portrait of a Mediterranean land and its people, and a touching account of what it means to be Gazan.’
Writer Louisa Waugh in her book, ‘Meet Me in Gaza’ takes us through the life of Gazans going about their daily lives in the face of adversity.
‘Gaza Writes Back is a collection of short stories from fifteen young writers in Gaza, members of a generation that has suffered immensely under Israel’s siege and blockade. Their experiences, especially during and following Israel’s 2008-2009 offensive known as “Operation Cast Lead”, have fundamentally impacted their lives and their writing.’
‘Gaza Writes Back’ through its 23 short stories, is the voice of these young Gazans about their home, education, earning their livelihood; with the aim for the world outside Gaza to know about their realties as experienced by them first hand. The book is sure to move you when you come across their hardships and the hope and courage that keeps them going.