Land of Lemons: Palestine’s fight for its future in Lemon Tree

Israel’s Lemon Tree uses the analogy of a lemon grove to reveal the political and social complexities present between Israel and Palestine. The lemon grove becomes the border between a Palestinian woman’s home and land and the Israeli defence minister’s new home with his wife. By using lemons as the central iconographic image in this film, the ritual of sharing food and drink, in this case, fresh squeezed lemonade, becomes intimately tied to the fight for sharing the land and hence, the fight for sharing Israel with Palestine. The lemons also signify the Palestinian’s strong historical and cultural relationship to their land. While viewing this screening as a Canadian in Vancouver I feel that it is necessary the chosen iconography is rather simple, lemons, in order for viewers who are completely outside of the social and political context of the West Bank as well as the languages, both Arabic and Hebrew are used along with English subtitles, to understand the narrative and also to connect emotionally with the social and political complexities present within these two cultures.
Natalie Schneck