27.1 | Loes van der Voort

Incorporating the Impossible: Female Suicide Terrorism in Before We Say Goodbye

The novel Before We Say Goodbye (2004) is endorsed by Amnesty International for contributing to a better understanding of human rights values. It tells the news item story of a Palestinian girl blowing up herself and an Israeli girl in a supermarket. Through exclusion, alienation and destruction, inclusion of both (groups of) individuals in human rights discourse is being sabotaged by the Israeli state, as well as by the Palestinian individual, who are polarized in the tension of being at once each other’s victim and perpetrator. This paper explores this complex web of human rights violations and finally explains how, and at what cost, the representation of the suicide attack that addresses the seemingly irresolvable dichotomy is precisely what makes this novel a claim for human rights.