Seeing the camp as a persistent political instrument in Israel–Palestine and beyond
The Common Camp underscores the role of the camp as a spatial instrument employed for reshaping, controlling, and struggling over specific territories and populations. Focusing on the geopolitical complexity of Israel–Palestine and the dramatic changes it has experienced during the past century, this book explores the region’s extensive networks of camps and their existence as both a tool of colonial power and a makeshift space of resistance.
Examining various forms of camps devised by and for Zionist settlers, Palestinian refugees, asylum seekers, and other groups, Irit Katz demonstrates how the camp serves as a common thread in shaping lands and lives of subjects from across the political spectrum. Analyzing the architectural and political evolution of the camp as a modern instrument engaged by colonial and national powers (as well as those opposing them), Katz offers a unique perspective on the dynamics of Israel–Palestine, highlighting how spatial transience has become permanent in the ongoing story of this contested territory.
The Common Camp presents a novel approach to the concept of the camp, detailing its varied history as an apparatus used for population containment and territorial expansion as well as a space of everyday life and subversive political action. Bringing together a broad range of historical and ethnographic materials within the context of this singular yet versatile entity, the book locates the camp at the core of modern societies and how they change and transform.