Arabic is unconditionally the national language of Palestinians, but for many it is no longer their mother tongue. More than a century after the early waves of immigration to the Americas and more than seven decades after the Nakba of 1948, generations of Palestinians have grown up in a variety of different contexts within Israel-Palestine and the world at large. This ongoing scattered state has led to the proliferation of Palestinian culture as it is simultaneously growing in multiple directions, depending on geographical, political, and lingual contextualization. A new generation of Palestinian and Palestinian-descended writers and artists from Latin and North America, Scandinavia, and Europe, as well as Israel-Palestine, are bringing stories of their heritage and the Palestinian nation into a variety of languages such Spanish, Italian, English, Danish, and Hebrew—among so many other languages.
Being There, Being Here is the product of an eight-year-long journey in which Maurice Ebileeni explores how the Palestinian homeland is being imagined in multiple languages from a variety of positions both locally and globally. The book poses unsettling questions about this current situation and also looks to the future to speculate about how a Palestinian nation might still house the notion of home for an increasingly diverse Palestinian population.