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A journal for storytelling, arguments, and discovery through tangential conversations.
SWANA Film Festival: contending with complexities of matrilineal relationships from the SWANA diaspora
Friday, March 12, 2021 | Tara Hakim
Three months ago, I grasped the opportunity and flew back to Jordan from Toronto amidst the global pandemic to be with family. It felt as if I was leaving home to go home; an oxymoron in itself - both literally and viscerally. The first few weeks were filled with an inchoate excitement involving reunions, local food cravings, and late-night catch-up conversations. Then, as time stretched and the pandemic slowness set in, so did my feelings and experience of being back. I found myself feeling more and more disoriented, fragmented, and dis/connected. Disconnected from my true self, my ways of being, and personal culture I have cultivated for myself; a combination of many cultures and lived experiences I belong to. I’m originally Palestinian, born and raised in Jordan with an Austrian grandmother. I was raised with the clear distinction that I am Palestinian, and not Jordanian, and yet I have never set foot in Palestine. Never felt Jordanian, nor Austrian. No identity. Dual identity? Triple? Where do I belong? Sparingly connected to selected moments, people and slices of daily life; mainly among my mother and her parents. In this unhome I sometimes call home, I feel most myself and safest in the confines of my maternal grandparents’ home and sometimes, in my mother’s embrace. I’ve been on a journey of contemplation and reflection since, and the relationship I have with my mother and home has somewhat been at the forefront.