Come My Children

By Hekmat Al-Taweel
Edited by Ghada Ageel & Barbara Bill
Foreword by Ilan Pappe
Categories: Literature & Language Studies, Auto/biography & Memoir, History, Gender & Sexuality Studies, Law & Legal Studies, Law & Society, Religious Studies, Women’s Studies, World Literature
Series: Women’s Voices from Gaza Series
Publisher: University of Alberta Press
Paperback : 9781772126761, 224 pages, June 2023
Ebook (EPUB) : 9781772126921, 176 pages, August 2023
Ebook (PDF) : 9781772126938, 176 pages, August 2023


"This is not only a fine book in the tradition of seminal works such as Khul-Khaal; it is a wonderful work of oral history that offers vital details to counter the Zionist narrative of Palestine." Ilan Pappé, University of Exeter, from the Foreword

Table of contents

Preface: Introducing Women’s Voices from Gaza ix
Foreword, Ilan Pappe xv
Acknowledgements xxiii
Introduction xxv

Come My Children
1 / Childhood: Growing Up in Gaza 3
2 / The British Mandate and School Days 21
3 / Marriage and Relations with Palestinian Muslims 39
4 / Business and Life Before and After the 1948 Nakba 51
5 / Palestinian Resistance Against the British Mandate 59
6 / The Egyptian Administration and the Israeli Occupation 71
7 / Yusuf, the United States, and Palestine 85

Chronology of Events in Palestine 107
Notes 127
Glossary 145
Bibliography 149


Hekmat Al-Taweel (1922–2008) was a native Palestinian Christian from Gaza City whose narrative unearths a version of history long excluded from mainstream discourse and provides an unfamiliar perspective on Muslim–Christian relationships. Her stories about life in Gaza highlight shared history, vibrant culture, and cherished traditions. Al-Taweel continued her education after marriage, sought community volunteer work, worked as a teacher and supervisor, and committed to activism throughout her life, all of which contradicts widespread Western orientalized stereotypes of Arab women. She also shares insights into life in Gaza during the British Mandate period as well as the 1948 Nakba and its aftermath. This is the third book in the Women’s Voices from Gaza Series, which honours women’s unique and underrepresented perspectives on the social, material, and political realities of Palestinian life.


“The Women's Voices From Gaza series is exceptional, offering insights into modern Gaza’s social history. It will attract a wide readership in Palestine studies and gender studies, as well as individuals interested in the Palestine question.” Rema Hammami, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Birzeit University