Two broken cameras: photography as a protective tool

By former EAs Chris and Judith

Watching B’Tselem’s ongoing video camera project brought to mind Five Broken Cameras, the award-winning film released in 2011. Co-directed by Palestinian Emad Burnat and Israeli Guy Davidi, it follows the daily lives of an extended family living on the West Bank, and illustrates how profoundly life is affected by the separation barrier. The B’Tselem project, which has been running since 2007, provides video cameras and training to Palestinians who live in areas of the West Bank where tensions are high and clashes frequent. It aims to document daily life under occupation and capture everything from routine intimidation (from soldiers and settlers) to human rights violations that, under normal circumstances, are kept hidden. The use of the cameras has been described by some of their users as providing a protective presence deferring and curtailing violence.

Continue reading