A Mask, the Colour of the Sky

Basim Khandaqji

Nur, an archaeologist living in a refugee camp in Ramallah, finds a blue identity card belonging to an Israeli in the pocket of an old coat. He adopts the mask of the occupier in an attempt to understand the Zionist mindset. As “Nur” becomes “Ur”, he joins an archaeological dig on a settlement, and historical Palestine is revealed. In the chasm between Nur and Ur – between the blue Israeli identity card, and the pass required by Palestinians for travel within Israel; and between the character’s suppressed original narrative, and the new dominant one – will Nur succeed in throwing off his mask, triumphing over Ur and reaching the light?  


Dar al-Adab


2024 Winner