Destroyed homes: : Reactions and Effects on Palestinian Families Exposed to House Demolitions in a Resiliency Perspective

University essay from Mittuniversitetet/Institutionen för socialt arbete

Author: Britt-inger Souty; [2008]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: This study examines Palestinian families exposed to house demolitions and their reactions to having their homes destroyed by the Israeli Authorities. The traumatic effects of suddenly becoming homeless is studied in a resiliency perspective, and comparisons with earlier research of resiliency and of mental health in the context of house demolitions are made. The purpose of the study is to illustrate the families’ reactions and their coping strategies in resisting the effects of trauma and desolation following repeated home demolitions. The data was collected through ethnographic field studies in Israel using participant observations, interviews, observations and documents. This study will conclude that the violation of homes has major influence on the mental health of the various family members. Men loose their value as providers, women loose the centre of their lives, and children loose their sense of safety and security. Discovery of how resilient protective factors empower the afflicted families when they rebuild their homes, in spite of the lack of being able to obtain building permits, is shown. However, the rebuilding is still a fragile process as the families often go through the trauma of demolition over and over again.

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