Jil Oslo: Palestinian Hip Hop, Youth Culture, and the Youth Movement

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Based on ethnographic research in Palestine, primarily during the Arab uprisings, this book explores the intersections between new youth cultures and protest politics among Palestinian youth in the West Bank and Israel. It focuses on Palestinian hip hop and the youth movement that emerged in 2011 as overlapping sites where new cultural and political imaginaries are being produced in the Oslo generation ("jil Oslo"). Challenging the Oslo framework of national politics and of cultural expression, these young artists and activists are rethinking and reviving the possibility of a decolonial present.


"In her perceptive, sensitive, penetrating analysis of the post-Oslo generation of Palestinian youth, Sunaina Maira paints a dynamic picture of contemporary life, art, and politics for young Palestinians under occupation and within the ’48 borders of Israel—an increasingly neoliberal world in which the Palestinian Authority is the face of the occupation, where claims of political malaise are shattered by new, energetic forms of political and cultural expression—from graffiti to Hip Hop, civil disobedience to BDS.  A must-read for anyone remotely interested in the future of Palestine."
Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Africa Speaks, America Answers: Modern Jazz in Revolutionary Times


"This rich and valuable book challenges us to think in radical terms about youth resistance in Palestine in the post-Oslo generation. These young people resist the demand to normalize their life under Israeli settler colonialism, while using popular culture to speak back against the necropolitical machinery of elimination. Maira’s book gives us an inspiring and compelling reading of how popular culture becomes another site to narrate and reshape a new politics."  
Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian, author of Militarization and Violence against Women in Conflict Zones in the Middle East: A Palestinian Case-Study


Author Info

Sunaina Maira is Professor of Asian American Studies at the University of California, Davis. She is the author of Desis in the House: Indian American Youth Culture in New York City and co-editor of Youthscapes: The Popular, the National, the Global. Her recent publications include the book, Missing: Youth, Citizenship, and Empire After 9/11, and articles on Palestinian and Arab popular culture in the U.S. and in Palestine.

Table of Contents



Jil Oslo: The Search for an Alternative Politics

Palestinian Hip Hop: A Different Kind of Map

The Youth Movement

Surveillance, Counter-Surveillance, and Feminist Questions


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