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Contributed by Prima Soho on 05.07.2007:

From Texas with Love was filmed in west Texas where Emily Jacir drove for one hour without stopping and filmed the road ahead.

The accompanying sound track is a compilation of 51 songs chosen by Palestinians living in Palestine.

Jacir asked each person. “If you had the freedom to get in a car and drive for one hour without being stopped (imagine that there is no Israeli military occupation; no Israeli soldiers, no Israeli checkpoints and roadblocks, no ‘by-pass’ roads), what song would you listen to?”

This piece is simultaneously about Palestinians living in the homeland and those living in exile. Jacir says of her piece: “It is in moments where I experience the most freedom (like being able to drive nonstop) that the brutal occupation and imprisonment of my family, my friends, and my people in Palestine becomes magnified and emphasized.

The ability to actually experience such a freedom in other countries is a painful marker and reminder of the impossibility of experiencing such a basic human right in Palestine.” The transformation of Palestine to Texas reinterprets the land and the road from a symbol of expansive freedom to a metaphor for coercion and claustrophobic oppression.

Emily Jacir was born in 1970. She lives and works in Ramallah and New York.


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