After studying a number of definitions for the terms watan and mwatana, we came to form our own point of view on these words: we cannot define mwatana without defining watan and what it means for everyone.
Watan is an idea and practice that is so important to some people that they build their lives on it, while others do not care for it at all, yet it remains a concept that impacts the daily life of everyone.
The questions asked within this issue are: Why do people need watan? And why do some people search for and demand it, while others do not care for it at all? What is the difference between the watan and mawtin?
Watan is the idea and the practice and mawtin is the dwelling place. Thus, it is possible to have a mawtin that is totally different from the watan, producing a dialectical process that is connected to how each one perceives *citizenship.
Tell me what watan means for you I will tell you who you are.
Contributors: Shadi Ramadan, Nabà Al-Assi, Murad Odeh.Citizenship (PDF)
*The Collective Dictionary is a series of publications containing definitions of concepts. The terms proposed are those considered fundamental for the understanding of the contemporary condition of Palestinian refugee camps. These words have emerged as a result of actions and active dialogs with the camp community. Written reflections on personal experiences, interviews, excursions and photographic investigations constitute the starting point for the formulation of more structured thoughts. The Collective Dictionary is both the reference and conceptual framework for all Campus in Camps projects and interventions.