A Season of Stones by Helen Winternitz

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A Season of Stones

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Helen Winternitz, an American journalist, spent a year in the small village of Nahalin, southwest of Bethlehem and almost completely encircled by Israeli settlements on confiscated land, to gain a better understanding of the problems of Palestinians under Israeli rule.

In 1988, while Winternitz was living in Nahalin, resentment against Israeli oppression erupted in a Palestinian uprising—the intifada—all over the West Bank. A SEASON OF STONES is aptly named; frustrated and angry young Palestinians hurled stones at Israeli soldiers at every opportunity, and bloody confrontations occurred. Winternitz develops these two inextricable themes—the day-by-day experience of life in the village, and the Palestinian struggle—as she also reveals her own personal struggles in adjusting to a foreign culture.

Gaining the villagers’ trust and finding lodgings in the village were ongoing difficulties. Although welcomed into many homes and finally able to rent a room, she nevertheless had to negotiate her acceptance continually. She was suspected of spying, was stoned and ambushed, and eventually...

(The entire section is 330 words.)