In the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, where Israeli settlers are in the process of taking over many Palestinian houses, there is an archive where Palestinians can store their photos, diaries, posters and other tangible documents. It is the first Palestinian run archive that is trying to collect memories, history AND documents that are produced TODAY, to store them for future generations.
The initiative is called 'Khazaeen', the Arabic word for 'cabinets'. Each Palestinian that brings documents to Khazaeen, gets its own box, its own cabinet, to store the documents. Through interviews, stories are collected and published on the blog of Khazaeen's website and on social media. The items are digitized and the owner can decide to take them home or to leave them in the cabinet. In the process of collecting and bringing documents to Khazaeen, many Palestinians have learned about the life and circumstances of their own ancestors. Often this has helped them to understand their own family history and the generational trauma that has been passed on, especially through the experiences of the Nakba in 1948 and the Naksa in 1967.
"It is very important to write our own history and to collect our own archive, rather than having our history stored in the colonial archives of the State of Israel", says Eman Alyan.
"It is also important to collect brochures, pamphlets, posters, photos and art work of today, so we can save it for the future. "
If you want to visit the website of Khazaeen you can use this link: https://khazaaen.org/en
If you enjoy listening to Stories from Palestine then you should also check out the podcast Jerusalem Unplugged. You can find it on most podcast players and on social media.