Farah Aboubakr


To fight forgetfulness and denial following the trauma of the Nakba (catastrophe) in 1948, some Palestinian folklorists have sought to collect, document, analyze, and translate pre-1948 Palestinian folktales. One major example is Speak, Bird, Speak Again (1989), a collection edited by Ibrahim Muhawi and Sharif Kanaana, and its Arabic version, Qul Ya Tayer (2001). I examine folktales from the collections, along with the compilers’ paratextual elements to explore the nature of memory and identity formation. By synthesizing some concepts in memory studies, I discuss the power of the folktale through the narrative of peasantry in recreating memory sites and consolidating Palestinian collective, national, and cultural identity.