This issue of Public Culture opens with a Forum essay on Israel and Palestine. It continues my editorial commitment to publish work about the region. Architect and urbanist Mahdi Sabbagh takes us on a drive from East to West Jerusalem, recounting the changes that have marked his neighborhood and the city he calls home. His is an experience of being a native, but nonetheless a foreigner. Sabbagh gives us an intimate portrait of daily life, helping us better understand both the shifting terrain of Israel and life under the occupation.

The first set of essays in the issue pick up two main themes that run through Sabbagh’s work: human rights and borders. Tobias Kelly seeks to return the category of conscience to human rights discourse, in the process reclaiming the concept from its nearly exclusive association with the religious right and expanding its...

You do not currently have access to this content.