Visual Occupations: Violence and Visibility in a Conflict Zone
The (Soldier’s) Gaze and the (Palestinian) Body: Power, Fantasy, and Desire in the Militarized Contact Zone
2015. "The (Soldier’s) Gaze and the (Palestinian) Body: Power, Fantasy, and Desire in the Militarized Contact Zone", Visual Occupations: Violence and Visibility in a Conflict Zone, Gil Z. Hochberg
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Chapter 3 visits the visual field created at the checkpoint, one of the only remaining sites left for a direct interaction between Israelis and Palestinians. Through a close reading of Chic Point: Fashion for Israeli Checkpoints (2003), a film (video/stills) by the Palestinian artist Sharif Waked, the chapter explores the violence involved in the meeting between the eyes of the soldiers and the bodies of Palestinians placed under examination. The readings further render visible the commonly invisible erotic and libidinal implications of the Israeli militarized gaze, suggesting that if homoeroticism in this context surely belongs to the realm of colonial fantasies about the “sexy terrorist,” it nevertheless also serves as a means of challenging the otherwise fixed power relationship between the Israeli gaze and the Palestinian who is subjected to it.