News reports out of the region are increasingly discouraging, and the possibilities for peace with dignity and equality for all have never seemed further away. Yet the story of a Palestinian bomb-maker-turned-peace-activist shows just how far people can move, if they choose.
Born to a family of Palestinian refugees in the Old City of Jerusalem, Sami was five years old when Israeli soldiers took over his home after the 1967 war. In moving detail Sami describes how these and other realities of his early years caused his radicalization.
Ironically, it was in an Israeli jail that his personal transformation began: Sami was welcomed into a highly organized, democratic community of prisoners who required that members of their cell read and engage in political discourse on topics ranging from global revolutions to Russian literature. It was here that Sami discovered the works of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.
Sami left prison still determined to fight for his people —but with a very different notion of how to undertake that struggle. He discovered the Palestinian Center for the Study of Nonviolence, and later co-founded the Seeds of Peace Center for Coexistence. He has kept his faith in reconciliation alive through the most difficult times, remaining determined to inspire a new generation to follow the path of peace and nonviolence.
Co-author Jen Marlowe has known Sami for 13 years, and was his colleague doing peace work in Jerusalem for 4 years. Marlowe will read from Sami's book and discuss his work, answering questions and engaging with the audience on what nonviolent activists like Sami have to offer in the face of on-going Israeli-Palestinian stalemate.
THE HOUR OF SUNLIGHT offers a perspective sorely missing from the media's portrayal of Palestinians. Marked by honesty, humor, pain, and, ultimately, compassion for all Palestinians and Israelis, THE HOUR OF SUNLIGHT charts an inspiring journey of perseverance and personal transformation. In so doing it illuminates the Palestinian experience through the story of one man's impassioned struggle for peace with justice.
Presented by A Cappella Books & co-sponsored by Amnesty International USA-Southern Region.
Event time: 7pm