It is Palestinian custom to harvest and forage for plants but they must do so illegally under Israeli law—a process documented in this visual feast, from field to kitchen. Under Israeli law, it is illegal to harvest wild plants that are traditionally used for cooking, such as za'atar (thyme) and akkoub (gundelia), though the practice has been an age-old tradition among Palestinians. In the occupied Golan Heights, Galilee and Jerusalem, locals show their resilience despite the prohibitive law, refusing to be further alienated from their land. From field to kitchen to courtroom, Foragers reveals the joy and knowledge embedded in this Palestinian custom. Imbued with suspense and humor, Foragers is an important commentary on the extent of the Israeli occupation of Palestine—where violence is not only physical, but also cultural.
Foragers | Jumana Manna, 2023, Palestine, 64 min
Preceded by another view of botanical colonialism:
Early films of Patagonia show a land that no longer exists, pine trees have replaced the ancient Araucaria trees. Near my new home in Brussels, Araucarias adorn front yards. How have they become a petty bourgeois fad here? What do these representations tell us about our times? The
Despair of Monkeys | Julián García Long, 2023, France / Belgium, 17 min