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Ryvka Barnard

Guest

Seeing How the Natives Live: On the Pitfalls and Potential of Alternative Tourism

[Crop of image of sign marking Area A. Photo by Yuval Ben-Ami.]

People tuned into news from Palestine are often surprised to hear that one of the occupied West Bank’s main industries is tourism. Tourism has provided livelihoods for people in many cities in historic Palestine for centuries; there was even a tour guide’s guild in early Ottoman Jerusalem. Palestine has long been a destination for religious pilgrims, and particularly Christian tourists have continued making pilgrimages, constituting the vast majority of the tourists entering ...

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The Palestinian Authority, UNESCO, and the Illusion of Triumph

[PA police forces confronting Palestinians protesting against the invitation of Shaul Mofaz to Ramallah. Image by Eoin O'Ceallaigh/Stop the Wall.]

Over one weekend, two seemingly incongruous sets of images dominated the news from Palestine: one set displayed local tourism operators and Palestinian Authority (PA) officials in Bethlehem celebrating the designation of the Nativity Church as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The other set of images, coming from Ramallah, showed PA police and thugs beating protestors, who had taken to the streets in anger over a scheduled (but later cancelled) Ramallah meeting between Israel’s ...

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Bio

Ryvka Barnard

 

Ryvka Barnard is a PhD student in Middle Eastern Studies at New York University. Her research is focused on tourism in Palestine.