+1 Recommend
1 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Recounting Memories of Resistance in 33 Days

      Arab Studies Quarterly
      Pluto Journals
      July 2006 War, Lebanon, Israel, cinema, resistance, memory


            In this article, I examine the only entirely fictional film made so far about Israel's July 2006 war on Lebanon: the Lebanese-Iranian film 33 Days (2012). I demonstrate how this cinematic intervention, centered on the real-life Battle of Aita al-Shaab, provides a counter-hegemonic narrative to the mostly Western and largely orientalist views not only of this war but of the history of conflict between two opposed political imaginaries: the Israeli on the one hand and the discourse of resistance on the other. I argue that the film's featuring a web of different types of intersecting memories—personal and collective, traumatic and inherited (post-memories)—of both Lebanese and Israeli characters is instrumental for (re)defining resistance as an ongoing project with both a historical trajectory and an eye to the future of Arab-Israeli armed conflict. While memories are used to recount parts of the (hi)story of combat against Israeli offensives, they also force Israeli commanders to recount, i.e., to recalculate, their own tactics and strategies as they encounter an unwavering and surprising opponent.


            Author and article information

            Arab Studies Quarterly
            Pluto Journals
            Spring 2016
            : 38
            : 2
            : 481-499
            © 2016 The Center for Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

            All content is freely available without charge to users or their institutions. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this journal without asking prior permission of the publisher or the author. Articles published in the journal are distributed under a http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.


            Social & Behavioral Sciences
            Israel,memory,resistance,cinema,Lebanon,July 2006 War


            1. . (2008). The Israeli-Hizbullah 34-Day War: Causes and Consequences. Arab Studies Quarterly , 30(2), 1–22.

            2. (2012). 33 Days: Israel's War on Umm Abbas. Al-Akhbar , April 21.

            3. (2006). Hizbullah and the IDF: Accepting New Realities Along the Blue Line. The MIT Electronic Journal of Middle East Studies , 6, 68–75.

            4. (1995). Introduction. In Trauma: Explorations in Memory , ed. . Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press.

            5. (2007). POWs or Illegal Combatants? Haaretz , March 27. Web. Accessed April 30, 2015. <http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/features/pows-or-illegal-combatants-1.216710#!>.

            6. (2008). Exhibiting the “Just-Lived Past”: Hizbullah's Nationalist Narratives in Transnational Political Context. Comparative Studies in Society and History , 50(2), 369–399.

            7. , and (2010). Filming Resistance: A Hezbollah Strategy. Radical History Review , 106, 70–85.

            8. (2006). Hizballah at War: A Military Assessment. Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Policy Focus 63, 1–14.

            9. (2008). The “Metaphorical Annihilation” of the Second Lebanon War (2006) from the Israeli Political Discourse. Discourse & Society , 19(1), 5–20.

            10. (2006). Today's War in Lebanon: The Latest Chapter of the Original 1948 Conflict. Electronic Lebanon , July 16. Web. Accessed March 28, 2015. <http://electronicintifada.net/content/todays-war-lebanon-latest-chapter-original-1948-conflict/6129>.

            11. (2014). “We Are All Hizbullah Now”: Narrating the Party of God. Journal for Cultural Research , 18(2), 158–170.

            12. (2008). The Generation of Postmemory. Poetics Today , 29(1), 103–128.

            13. (2013). Soldiers as Filmmakers: On the Prospect of “Shooting War” and the Question of Ethical Spectatorship. Screen , 54(1), 44–61.

            14. (1993). The Temporality of the Landscape. World Archaeology , 25(2), 152–174.

            15. Iran, Lebanon Resort to Movie for Revenge on Israel. (2012). RT News English , June 1. Web. Accessed March 28, 2015. <http://rt.com/art-and-culture/lebanon-hezbollah-33-days-780/>.

            16. (2006). The Voices of Taboos: Women in Lebanese War Cinema. Women: A Cultural Review , 17(1), 65–77.

            17. (2008). Lebanese Cinema: Imagining the Civil War and Beyond . London: I.B. Tauris.

            18. (2009). Satellite Television, the War on Terror and Political Conflict in the Arab World. In Spaces of Security and Insecurity: Geographies of the War on Terror , eds. and . Aldershot: Ashgate.

            19. (2011). Lebanese Cinema and the Representation of War. In Film in the Middle East and North Africa: Creative Dissidence , ed. . Austin: University of Texas Press.

            20. (2013). Image Politics in the Middle East: The Role of the Visual in Political Struggle . London: I.B. Tauris.

            21. (2014). Southern Counterpublics: The Poetics and Politics of South Lebanon's Ruinscapes. Journal of Arabic Literature , 45, 169–217.

            22. (2005). Origins and Patterns in the Discourse of New Arab Cinema. Arab Studies Quarterly , 27(1–2), 1–20.

            23. and (eds.) (2013). Contemporary Middle Eastern Cultures: Literature, Cinema and Music . London: Routledge.

            24. (2014). Staging Khiam: Documentary, Theater, and Archive in Postwar Lebanon. Contemporary French and Francophone Studies , 18(5), 514–522.

            25. (2008). Experience—Information—Image: A Historiography of Unfolding: Arab Cinema as Example. Cultural Studies Review , 14(1), 85–98.

            26. and (2013). Approaches to Narrating Conflict in Palestine and Lebanon: Practices, Discourses and Memories. In Narrating Conflict in the Middle East: Discourses, Image and Communications Practices in Lebanon and Palestine , eds. and . London: I.B. Tauris.

            27. (2015). Humanitarian Therapeutics of War and the Politics of Trauma and Violence in Lebanon. Web. Accessed April 24, 2015. <http://cskc.daleel-madani.org/paper/humanitarian-therapeutics-war-and-politics-trauma-and-violence-lebanon>.

            28. (2012). Iranian-Lebanese Co-Production: “33 days” in Iranian Cinema. Alahednews , January 17. Web. Accessed March 23, 2015. <http://www.english.alahednews.com.lb/essaydetails.php?eid=16425&cid=269#.VDbMad6D5pk>.

            29. New Lebanese Action Film Glorifies Hezbollah in 2006 War with Israel. (2012). Haaretz , June 1. Web. Accessed March 23, 2015. <http://haaretz.com/news/middle-east/new-lebanese-action-film-glorifies-hezbollah-in-2006-war-with-israel>.

            30. (1992). Arctic Homeland: Kinship, Community and Development in Northwest Greenland . Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press.

            31. (2009). Military Orientalism: Eastern War through Western Eyes . New York: Columbia University Press.

            32. Rasa'el qa'id al-moqawama Samahat al-Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah khilal 'udwan tammuz 2006 (Letters of the Leader of the Resistance Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah during the July 2006 Assault). (2012). DVD. Beirut: Dar al-Manar.

            33. (2014). Mémoire de Guerre et de Résistance dans les Films Libanais. Contemporary French and Francophone Studies , 18(5), 505–513.

            34. (2012). Like Aita al-Shaab Stood Lebanon: A Steadfast Fortress 33 Days. Uprooted Palestinian, April 20. Web. Accessed March 27, 2015. <http://uprootedpalestinians.blogspot.com/2012/04/like-aita-al-shaab-stood-lebanon.html>.

            35. (2007). The Mayor, the Martyr, and the Pomegranate Trees: How the Lebanese Town of Aita al Shaab Won the War and Lost Almost Everything. Web. Accessed April 29, 2015. <http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2007/01/mayor-martyr-and-pomegranate-trees>.

            36. (2010). Reframing Resistance. Democratization , 17(2). Web. Accessed March 27, 2015. doi:10.1080/13510341003588773.

            37. (2007). Arab Cinema: History and Cultural Identity . Cairo: The American University in Cairo Press.

            38. and (2007). Captives in Lebanon: The Truth about the Second Lebanon War . Tel Aviv: Yedioth Ahronoth.

            39. Shuhada' Aita (Aita's Martyrs) (2007). As-Safir , July 5. Web. Accessed April 29, 2015. <http://assafir.com/Article/86830/Archive>.

            40. (2014). The International Palestinian Resistance: Documentary and Revolt. Journal of Postcolonial Writing , 50(2), 148–162.

            41. (2006). I Half-Expected John Wayne. In Lebanon, Lebanon , ed. . London: Saqi.

            42. (2004). Trauma Fiction . Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.


            Comment on this article