Views of Palestine: perspectives and experiences from the British Mandate
Joint Middle East Department/Palestine Exploration Fund lecture series

Thursday 3 October 2013,

Free, just drop in

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Anne Lineen discusses her search for images of the British Mandate in Palestine.

In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Palestine was depicted to Western audiences as an archaic and unchanging, the people of the country existing only as extras and props in the popular Bonfils postcards or Underwood and Underwood stereoviews.

These beautiful and beguiling images created an imagined landscape that served only as the setting for Bible stories. However, events before and during the period of British rule can only be explained by representing the aspirations, expectations and anxieties of the people who lived and served in Palestine.

Anne Lineen, curator of the Brunei Gallery's recent 'Britain in Palestine' exhibition discusses her search for images that hinted of a more complex and human reality.

Well-worn and much loved family snapshots in private collections, beautiful studio portraits that survive in public archives, and pages from albums proudly compiled by Palestine policemen or British soldiers – all these created a rich tapestry of images that conveyed the complexity, the drama and the trauma of life in Palestine under the British Mandate.

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Haifa in the late 1930s, Elias Massoud Raffoul (detail). By kind permission of Antoine Raffoul.