“They demolish our houses while we build theirs.” This is how a Palestinian stonemason, in line at a checkpoint outside a Jerusalem suburb, described his life to Andrew Ross. Drawing on hundreds of interviews in Palestine and Israel, Ross’s engrossing, surprising, and gracefully written story of this fascinating ancient trade shows how the stones of Palestine, and Palestinian labour, have been used to build out the state of Israel—in the process, constructing “facts on the ground”—even while the industry is central to Palestinians’ own efforts to erect bulwarks against the Occupation. For decades, the hands that built Israel’s houses, schools, offices, bridges, and even its separation barriers have been Palestinian. Looking at the Palestine–Israel conflict in a new light, this book asks how this record of achievement and labour be recognised.
Stone Men: The Palestinians Who Built Israel by Andrew Ross is 40% off until Sunday, April 21 at 11:59PM EST.[book-strip index="1" style="buy"]
“Meet ‘Michelangelo of Beit Fajjar’ and the other Palestinian stone-masons whose superb craft has fashioned Israel’s famous ‘white cities.’ Their hidden labor is the starting point for Ross’s brilliantly original exploration of how dispossession and exploitation continue to define the relationship of Israeli and Palestinian societies. This is radical journalism at its best—and I mean Pulitzer-Prize-quality best.” – Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums
“When a writer as original and committed as Andrew Ross turns his attention to Palestine, we know we are up for a unique set of observations. Ross uses the stone quarries of Palestine to weave a story that brings together geology, politics, military occupation, water, and environment. It is a story that is at once specific in its attention to details of matter and place and expansive as it takes us across the tragic history of this late manifestation of colonial domination.” – Eyal Weizman, author of Hollow Land