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Fieldwork in Israel and Palestine

A left wing march passes by onlookers in central Tel Aviv(Fiona Wright, 2014)Activists in a drum circle wear pink face masks (Fiona Wright, 2014)An Israeli nurse treats Palestinian patients (Fiona Wright, 2014)I conducted eighteen months of fieldwork with Jewish Israeli left-wing activists in Israel/Palestine between November 2009 and May 2011. The research encompassed various different kinds of activism, including direct action protests in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, the work of a medical humanitarian and human rights organisation based in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, and the campaigns of a municipal political coalition in Tel Aviv. This was during a period when Israeli politics was becoming increasingly polarised, with left-wing and human rights organisations under threat of becoming criminalised through legislation promoted by right-wing politicians and groups. In my thesis I focus on the relations Jewish Israeli activists built with various excluded others in the Israeli public sphere, primarily Palestinians, asylum seekers from Eritrea and Sudan, and disenfranchised Mizrahi Jewish activists, as they sought to reject the dominant nationalist politics of their surroundings.

In the top photograph, a left-wing march passes by onlookers in a central Tel Aviv cafe.

In the second, activists in a drum circle wear pink face masks, mocking and mimicking the black masks worn by armed police in previous weeks, at a demonstration in Sheikh Jarrah, East Jerusalem.

The final picture , bottom right, shows an Israeli nurse as she treats Palestinian patients at the mobile clinic of an Israeli medical humanitarian and human rights organisation in the West Bank.