CSUSB Communication Studies Professor Awarded for Documentary

By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– Ahlam Muhtaseb, Cal State San Bernardino professor of communication studies, along with her co-producer and co-director, Andy Trimlett, were selected for the Storytellers: Media & Education Award by Rebuilding Alliance for their documentary “1948: Creation and Catastrophe.”

“As a small organization we seek opportunities to make connections and recognize the efforts of others to build understanding and penetrate the seemingly impenetrable wall of silence here in the U.S.,” said Jamal Alradaideh, chairperson of Rebuilding Alliance’s Board of Directors, in an award letter.

“1948: Creation and Catastrophe is a perfect example of the use of personal stories to create understanding and help people make sense of the current conflict with the hope that that knowledge will serve to build peace,” Alradaideh continued. “It is for this reason that we present you with this award.”

The award will be given to Muhtaseb and Trimlett in January at the 2019 Rebuilding Alliance Awards and Benefit Dinner in San Francisco.  

“At this event, we recognize and honor peacemakers and storytellers who have shown courage and leadership that promotes a just and enduring peace in Israel and Palestine based on equal rights, security, and opportunity for all,” said Alradaideh.

Rebuilding Alliance is a nonprofit organization that focuses on advancing equal rights and opportunity for Palestinians through education, advocacy and support that assures Palestinian families the right to a home, schooling, economic security, safety and a promising future.

Muhtaseb and Trimlett spent 10 years making their 86-minute documentary, which explores the events of 1948, the most pivotal year in one of the most controversial conflicts in the world. According to its website, “this documentary was the last chance for many of its Israeli and Palestinian characters to narrate their first-hand accounts of the creation of a state and the expulsion of a nation.”

Muhtaseb and Trimlett poured over thousands of pages of historical documents, conducted more than 90 interviews, collected more than 1,400 photographs from three dozen sources, combed through hours of archival film and gathered dozens of documents from Israeli military archives.

The documentary began its screening journey in 2017, with its premiere at the 26th annual Arizona International Film Festival in April. Since then, the documentary has been shown at various national and international events, and was even nominated for an Al Ard XV Film Festival award in Italy.

For more information about “1948: Creation and Catastrophe,” visit its website at 1948movie.com.

To learn more about Rebuilding Alliance, visit its website at rebuildingalliance.org.

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