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Hollow Land: Israel's Architecture of Occupation Hardcover – 4 Jun 2007


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Verso (4 Jun 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844671259
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844671250
  • Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 0.3 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 610,814 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"...Weizman, an Israeli-born architect who is the recipient this
year of the prestigious Stirling Prize for architecture, will open a series
of lectures this fall at the Canadian Center for Architecture in Montreal.
The talks are pegged to the release of Hollow Land: Israel's Architecture
of Occupation, a chilling book in which he explores the way the military
selects targets in bombing and fortifying cities and how those strategies
can re-emerge in civilian planning practices during peacetime. His analysis
is ideally timed..." -- Nicolai Ouroussoff, New York Times, September 10, 2006

"A fascinating interpretation of the Israeli situation that argues
architecture and planning are being used as weapons in a "war by other
means ... It is a detailed foray into a highly complex situation...highly
stimulating..." -- Pamela Buxton, Building Design, July 2007

"In Hollow Land, Eyal Weizman has taken [Edward] Said's thesis to
a new level, generating extraordinary, and at times surreally
uncomfortable, conclusions...Weizman's book is of salutary interest." -- Jay Merrick, The Independent, June 28, 2007

"Weizman's forensic rigour in analysing the methodology [of
occupation] is without equal. Hollow Land is a bleak but essential book."
-- Robert Bevan, RIBA Journal, July 1, 2007

"[Eyal Weizman] has a keen eye for design, space and structure,
bringing a refreshingly new perspective to a topic hitherto ruled by
journalists, historians and social scientists. The result is one of the
most original books on Israel to appear in years ... a vision of the
conflict that only an architect could have provided. Israeli planners,
Weizman claims, no longer think of the West Bank in two-dimensional terms;
instead, they have re-imagined the land as a multilayered system akin to an
architect's project model ... The book's prognosis is desperate and gloomy,
but Weizman supports it with prodigious documentation, rare interviews and
a remarkable eye for the politics of design. His chapter on Jerusalem's
architectural bylaws, for example, is a masterpiece of political
analysis... Weizman's architectural approach makes Hollow Land a tonic for
even the most jaded observers of the Israel-Palestine tragedy... The
quality of [his] analysis is truly exciting. -- The Nation, July 16/23, 2007

"[Weizman] surpasses Said's essentially two dimensional vision
with a 3D Sensurround revelation of a land in which architecture,
infrastructure and town planning have become strategic military apparatus
as important as tanks and special troops. This is an engrossing, debatable
and suitably disorientating treatise."
-- Architects' Journal, July 5, 2007

About the Author

Eyal Weizman is Director of the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths College, University of London, and has worked with a variety of NGOs and human right groups in Israel-Palestine. He co-edited the book A Civilian Occupation to accompany the major exhibition of the same name, has written many articles in journals, magazines, and books, and is an Editor at Large for Cabinet. He received the James Stirling Memorial Lecture Prize for 2006-7.

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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Gwilym Rees on 8 Sep 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is an utterly convincing book - well-researched and documented, and unemotionally expressed. For any observer of the Palestinian scene, it rings true. As Ilan Pappe has made clear (in `The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine`), there came a point at which the Israeli state`s terrible violence against ordinary Palestinian people, feasible in the anarchic days after 1948, but increasingly criticised by international public opinion, became outmoded. Instead of wholesale massacres and expulsions, we now have land-control policies, involving the development of settlements, road classification, planning laws, building permits, the building of barriers - all of it designed to make life hopelessly difficult, if not impossible, for ordinary Palestinians. This way, the objectives of Zionism, to own and control everything from the Jordan to the sea, can be met by apparently less aggressive but more insidious means.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By sarah10409 on 23 Jun 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an incredible book. It's hardly a snappy read, and it's frustrating that Verso insist on only publishing it in hardback, making it even weightier and more expensive, but it's worth every moment and penny. In cool, lucid prose Weizman describes not the direct, bloody violence of, for instance, Sharyn Lock's Gaza: Beneath the Bombs, but the precise, insidious ways in which the Israeli state, its forward troops, the right-wing settlement movement, and corporate interests such as the Orange mobile phone company have colluded to appropriate Palestinian land and reduce the West Bank, the supposed basis of a 'two-state solution' into a tattered fragment of land. Depressing stuff, but this book is vital reading for anyone who wants to understand the recurrent failures of US/UK-supported 'peace processes.'
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By R. J. Farrer on 7 Jan 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
`Hollow Land' by Eyal Weizman is a brave and ground-breaking work. It is ostensibly about the techniques, both structural and behavioural, for the control of contested space. The space discussed here is the land of Palestine/Israel. The book is sometimes described as a work of "Forensic Architecture" but its main focus is really about the psychology of cultural suppression, humiliation and revenge.
The language is sometimes abstruse and theoretical but the many vivid examples make this book accessible to most readers interested in the topic. Eyal Weizman is humane and clearly has sympathy for the Palestinians but he is a realist not a radical.

The book was published in 2007, before the global economic crash and the last two Gazan `uprisings', so the comments about the "withering away" of critiques of late capitalist culture (p187) seem odd. (Since 2008 we have had little else but critiques of globalised capital). Weizman's more recent work has dealt with some of these issues.

Weizman begins by proving that the boundaries of the disputed space he is discussing extend well beyond visible terrain or surface features. Israel's complete control of the Palestinians includes their housing, employment, water supply, food supply, trees, crops, sewage disposal and the airspace above them and the sea beyond. Even sewage can be both a weapon, the IDF pour it into smuggler tunnels they come across, and a pollutant (`drinking' water available to Palestinians is both of inferior quality and more expensive than that provided to Jewish settlers nearby). This slow-motion war between Arabs and Israelis is completely asymmetric in terms of fire-power and resources.
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By samah on 18 Oct 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
very good quality, looks really new
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By J. Golding on 27 Aug 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Erudite; gripping. A must read
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