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The Book

Before Their Diaspora is a visual journey into Palestine before 1948. Every important aspect of Palestinian society comes to life in the nearly 500 photographs, carefully selected from thousands available in private and public collections throughout the world. Descriptive, analytical texts, introduce each of the five historical periods into which the book is divided. Carefully researched, captions identify the time, place, personalities and context of each photograph. The first printing was in 1984. Learn more about the book.

 

Using the Website & Digital Book

An instructional video on how to use this website.

The Author

Born in Jerusalem, Walid Khalidi was educated at the University of London and Oxford University. He taught at Oxford, the American University of Beirut, and Harvard. Khalidi is the general secretary of the Institute for Palestine Studies (IPS) and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

 

Walid Khalidi on Before Their Diaspora

The author discusses the making of this book.

Special Thanks

The publication of the first printing of Before Their Diaspora in 1984 was made possible through the generous patronage of Mr Abdul Hamid Shoman, Chairman of the Board of Director, the Arab Bank (Amman, Jordan) and Mr Hassib Sabbagh, founder of the Diana Tamari Sabbagh Foundation (Beirut, Lebanon).

This electronic Portugues edition of Before Their Diaspora was made possible through the generosity of Dr. Gamal Abouali.

Fleeing Jaffa

With no proper military organization or civil defense, the morale of the Palestinian civilian population broke under the twin offensives by the Haganah and the Irgun. Here women and children salvage some belongings as they flee the city.

Into the Sea

Palestinians driven into the sea at Jaffa Harbor, late April 1948. With the land routes cut off by the Haganah, tens of thousands of the citizens of Jaffa and neighboring villages fled by boat to Gaza and Egypt; scores were drowned.

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