The book, Gaza Blues, is a collaboration between Samir el-Youssef, a Palestinian, and Israel’s Etgar Keret.
El-Youssef came up with the idea just over two years ago, during some of the worst violence of the current Palestinian intifada.
He called Keret, who said he liked the idea immediately.
“I wanted to do something, but ‘something’ is usually to sign a petition that you have already signed 500 times before. We wanted to make our own country, in a book if not on land,” Keret says.
The result is a disconcerting blend of razor-sharp short stories from Keret – one of Israel’s best-selling writers – and a meandering novella by el-Youssef, a writer and literary critic living in London.
Perhaps most startling, given the nature of the project, is that their work is not overtly political.
I think ideas like this are great and very constructive. More and more people should think this way and try to bring peace and understanding through literature, art, music, theatre, …etc.
Politics has proven to be of no real use.