Celebrities for Palestine part of the peacemaking process; Jen Marlowe
Jen Marlowe is a Seattle-based award-winning author/documentary filmmaker/playwright and human rights activist.
It takes humility to feel peoples struggles and pains and witnessing Palestinian struggles is more than enough to feel the necessity to want to be a bridge for peace. Marlowe uses her writing to give solutions to the Israeli/Palestinian violence.
“On July 28, at least eight children in Gaza were killed when a playground was shelled. Entire extended families—children included—have been wiped out. According to Save the Children, one-third of those injured in Gaza are children and tens of thousands more have been displaced from their homes, or have lost homes that were damaged or destroyed,” said Marlowe on Rays of Hope in Gaza
The reality has never been so grim, she said, And yet, in the midst of this darkness, there are Israelis and Palestinians who are working tirelessly for an end to bloodshed, and to all forms of violence—including the structural violence of the occupation/siege, Marlowe said.
Marlowe began her professional life working at Seattle Children’s Theatre; from 1994-2000, she did youth theatre work in Seattle, using theatre as a platform for students to tell their stories.
Marlowe lived and worked in Jerusalem several years, using some of these same techniques to engage in dialogue-based conflict resolution with Palestinian and Israeli teenagers. Jen also did conflict resolution work with youth in Afghanistan, Cyprus, India, Pakistan and Bosnia-Herzegovina. It was while working with youth in conflict areas that she first picked up a video camera—at that time, in order to record messages being exchanged between Israeli and Palestinian youth. As the youth themselves pushed the video dialogue project to more complex realms, Jen began to explore the idea of how film can be used, not only as a tool of dialogue, but also as a tool of activism. In 2004, with colleagues Adam Shapiro and Aisha Bain, Jen traveled to Northern Darfur and Eastern Chad to make the award-winning documentary film Darfur Diaries: Message from Home and wrote the accompanying book Darfur Diaries: Stories of Survival (Nation Books, 2006). Darfur Diaries was included in the 2007 edition of the Best American Non-Required Reading, edited by Dave Eggers.
Jen’s second feature-length award-winning documentary is called Rebuilding Hope: Sudan’s Lost Boys Return Home. Rebuilding Hope follows three Sudanese-American young men on their first homecoming trip back to Sudan, to discover whether their homes and families survived the civil war and to build a school, drill wells and bring medical supplies to their villages in Sudan.
Jen’s second book, called The Hour of Sunlight: One Palestinian’s Journey from Prisoner to Peacemaker (Nation Books, 2011), is co-authored with and tells the story of Sami Al Jundi, a Palestinian man who spent ten years in Israeli prison for being involved in militant anti-occupation activities as a youth and who has spent the last two decades of his life working towards nonviolence and peaceful reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians.The Hour of Sunlight was the winner of the London-based Middle East Monitor’s Palestine Book Award in 2012.