Sharon and My Mother-in-Law: Ramallah Diaries

  • 1118 International Affairs Building, Columbia University

A brown bag discusson and book talk by Suad Amiry

Suad Amiry provides an original, ironic, and humorous look at the day-to-day absurdities and agonies of being a Palestinian living on the West Bank from the early 1980s to the present day. She recounts her frustrations with West Bank life, including having her one month visitor’s permit torn up on her wedding day, as well as the joys of meeting her husband and hanging out with friends. The book also describes the bombardment of Arafat’s headquarters in Ramallah, the curfews, and the destruction of the historic district of Nablus.

"Extremely funny…[the book] provides unique insights into life under occupation. This powerful little volume should be required reading for American neocons and all those involved in prosecuting the war on terror. Amiry’s acute ear for gossip makes it almost a kind of Palestinian ‘Desperate Housewives’."
– The Sunday Times

Suad Amiry is an architect and the founder and director of RIWAQ, Centre for Architectural Conservation, in Ramallah. She studied architecture at the American University of Beirut and at the universities of Michigan and Edinburgh, participated in the 1991-93 Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations in Washington, DC, and from 1994-96 was assistant deputy minister and director general of the Ministry of Culture in Palestine. She was awarded Italy's Viareggio-Versilia Prize in 2004 for this book.