On Tuesday, April 13 Israeli storyteller Noa Baum performed her compelling one-woman show, A Land Twice Promised, at 200 Church. An emotional narrative of Israeli and Palestinian women’s stories, Baum’s performance weaved together her personal narrative as a Jewish woman growing up in Jerusalem with that of Jumana, a Palestinian woman from Jerusalem whom she met as an adult in California. Through changes in her accent and intonations, Baum shared the stories of her grandmother’s escape from the Nazis, her mother’s work as a nurse during the 1948 Israeli War of Independence, and Noa’s own childhood recollections of the 1967 Six Day War. She contrasted these narratives with the experiences of Jumana and Jumana’s mother and grandmother who lived in East Jerusalem, only 5km from Baum, under Jordanian and then Israeli control.
The aim of the presentation was to openly and constructively address the complex emotions and the often-contradictory histories that surround this city. Baum concluded her presentation with a call for increased cross-cultural dialogue as a critical peace-building tool. WesShalom, Adapt, and the Inter-faith Justice League co-sponsored the performance.