New Article: Peled, Palestinian Oral History as a Source for Understanding the Past

Peled, Kobi. “Palestinian Oral History as a Source for Understanding the Past: Insights and Lessons from an Oral History Project among Palestinians in Israel.” Middle Eastern Studies 50.3 (2014): 412-25.





The purpose of this article is to further explore the potential for Palestinian oral history to be used as a source for understanding the past. It examines existing directions in this field and highlights new approaches based on a discussion of an oral history project conducted by the author of this paper – a Jewish Israeli – in the Upper Galilee between the years 2006 and 2011. The article sharply illustrates the necessity and the urgency of recording Palestinian oral history with regard to the period that preceded the 1948 war, especially where written sources are lacking. It demonstrates the richness of oral history among Palestinians in Israel and exemplifies its ability to capture a vivid picture of a segment of Palestinian rural life before the Nakba. Methodologically, the article emphasizes the significance of cross-checking non-dependent oral sources as well as cross-checking oral sources against written testimonies as a means of striving for the truth and as a useful way of examining the reliability of oral sources.

ToC: Journal of Israeli History 33.1 (2014)


Towards a de-Occidentalist perspective on Israel: The case of the occupation

Johannes Becke
pages 1-23

A Zionist torn between two worlds: Aharon Eisenberg’s correspondence after the Young Turk Revolution

Yuval Ben-Bassat
pages 25-39

Oral testimonies, archival sources, and the 1948 Arab-Israeli War: A close look at the occupation of a Galilean village

Kobi Peled
pages 41-61


Meir Har-Zion’s act of reprisal: Reality and memory

Efrat Seckbach
pages 63-84

The failure to formulate a national science policy: Israel’s Scientific Council, 1948–1959

Ari Barell
pages 85-107

Book Reviews

Place, Memory and Myth in Contemporary Israeli Cinema

Yaron Peleg
pages 109-111


Zionist Arabesques: Modern Landscapes, Non-Modern Texts

Arieh Saposnik
pages 111-113