Remembering Rachael Corrie

 

This piece was created in 2006 for the “Revolutionary Women’s Cabaret” at the Center for Independent Artists.

This is a 10-minute edited version of a 30-minute performance.  This piece was created in 2006 for the “Revolutionary Women’s Cabaret” at the Center for Independent Artists in Minneapolis, MN by artist Malia Araki Burkhart.  Malia combined puppetry techniques with video projection and Butoh dance to tell the story of Rachael Corrie. Rachael was a US citizen, and a member of the pro-Palestinian group International Solidarity Movement (ISM). She was crushed to death by an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) armored bulldozer in a southern Gaza Strip while placing her body between the bulldozer and the home of a Palestinian family about to be demolished. This performance includes a visual summary of the history of the conflict including references to the common roots of Islam and Judaism, the WWII holocaust of the Jewish people, the founding of Israel and the occupation of the Palestine. The text includes excerpts of a (real) letter by “Danny”, a young IDF soldier who wrote to Rachael, a fictional statement by the Palestinian doctor whose home Rachael was defending, and excerpts from real letters Rachael had sent home before she was killed by the bulldozer. I offer this performance in memory of the bravery of Rachael Corrie, for placing her own life in the line of justice; For the Palestinian people who face oppression and disproportional force; and for the Jewish diaspora — many of whom see the connections between the holocaust they endured and the current genocide of the Palestinian people. I pray for peace; and I pray that we all embody the bravery that Rachael showed in standing up for what is right.