Gaza in Context: A Collaborative Teach-In Series — Session 04

Gaza in Geography

 Nour JoudahJehad Abu Salim

Moderated byBassam Haddad

2 November 2023
10:00 AM PST | 1:00 PM EST | 8:00 PM Palestine

Teach-In Session 04

This teach-in will contextualize the geography of Gaza historically as the once largest district in Palestine to its present day as a besieged Strip. Holding significantly less geographic familiarity than the West Bank with the larger public, we will also break down the significance of the current evacuation line at Wadi Gaza, what the current displacements will mean for Palestinians in the Gaza Strip moving forward, and how the ongoing ground invasion is evolving.

Gaza in Context Collaborative Teach-In Series

We are together experiencing a catastrophic unfolding of history as Gaza awaits a massive invasion of potentially genocidal proportions. This follows an incessant bombardment of a population increasingly bereft of the necessities of living in response to the Hamas attack in Israel on October 7. The context within which this takes place includes a well-coordinated campaign of misinformation and the unearthing of a multitude of essentialist and reductionist discursive tropes that depict Palestinians as the culprits, despite a context of structural subjugation and Apartheid, a matter of consensus in the human rights movement.

The co-organizers below are convening weekly teach-ins and conversations on a host of issues that introduce our common university communities, educators, researchers, and students to the history and present of Gaza, in context. 

Co-organizers: Arab Studies Institute, Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, George Mason University’s Middle East and Islamic Studies Program, Rutgers Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Birzeit University Museum, Harvard’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Brown University’s Center for Middle East Studies, University of Chicago’s Center for Contemporary Theory, Brown University’s New Directions in Palestinian Studies, Georgetown University’s Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies, Georgetown University-Qatar, American University in Cairo’s Alternative Policy Studies, Middle East Studies’ Global Academy, University of Chicago’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies, CUNY’s Middle East and Middle Eastern American Center, George Mason University’s Center for Global Islamic Studies, University of Illinois Ghicago’s Arab American Cultural Center, George Washington University’s Institute for Middle East Studies


Nour Joudah
is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Asian American Studies at UCLA. She holds a PhD in Geography and her dissertation, Mapping Decolonized Futures: Indigenous Visions for Hawaii and Palestine, highlights the efforts by Palestinian and native Hawaiian communities to use indigenous counter-mapping as a cartographic and decolonial praxis to imagine and work toward liberated futures. 
Jehad Abu Salim is Executive Director of the Jerusalem Fund and Palestine Center in Washington D.C. He is completing his PhD in the History and Hebrew and Judaic Studies joint program at New York University. His main area of research is Palestinian and Arab perceptions of the Zionist project and the Jewish question before 1948. Jehad recently edited the book Light in Gaza: Writings Born of Fire, published by Haymarket Books in 2022. 

Bassam Haddad is Founding Director of the Middle East and Islamic Studies Program and Associate Professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. He is the author of Business Networks in Syria: The Political Economy of Authoritarian Resilience (Stanford University Press, 2011) and co-editor of A Critical Political Economy of the Middle East (Stanford University Press, 2021). Bassam is Co-Founder/Editor of Jadaliyya Ezine and Executive Director of the Arab Studies Institute. He serves as Founding Editor of the Arab Studies Journal and the Knowledge Production Project. He is co-producer/director of the award-winning documentary film, About Baghdad, and director of the acclaimed series Arabs and Terrorism. Bassam serves on the Board of the Arab Council for the Social Sciences and is Executive Producer of Status Audio Magazine and Director of the Middle East Studies Pedagogy Initiative (MESPI). He received MESA's Jere L. Bacharach Service Award in 2017 for his service to the profession. Currently, Bassam is working on his second Syria book titled Understanding the Syrian Calamity: Regime, Opposition, Outsiders (forthcoming, Stanford University Press).