"Across the Wall" arose from a unique collaboration between scholars from Israel and the Palestinian territories, seeking to arrive at a shared framework for studying the history of this troubled land. Ilan Pappe and Jamil Hilal, among the top academics in Israel and Palestine respectively, brought historians from both sides of the wall together for dialogue on history, identity, and the meaning of the conflict. In the volume, they argue persuasively for the concept of a 'bridging narrative', a historiographical discourse which can accommodate seemingly incompatible national meta-narratives. Proceeding from this innovative theoretical framework, "Across the Wall" then goes on to offer critical examinations of some of the most contested issues in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: the 1948 'Nakba', the 1967 war, the occupation, and the formation of the PLO. The result is a radical new take on the history of Israel/Palestine which transcends the biases inherent in both countries' national narratives and points towards a new model for the historiography of conflicts.
Ilan Pappe is Director of the European Centre for Palestine Studies and a fellow of the Institute for Arab and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter. He is also Co-director of The Exeter Centre for Ethno-Political Studies. He is the author of various books, including 'The Making of the Arab-Israeli Conflict' (I.B.Tauris). Jamil Hilal is a sociologist associated with Birzeit University and has lectured at several UK universities. He has held senior associate research fellowships at the University of Oxford and SOAS, and in 2008 he was a visiting scholar at Carnegie Middle East Center.