Guardian dance critic praises Batsheva’s ‘effective nursery of talent’ AND declares Gaza ‘occupied’


Deca Dance by Batsheva Ensemble. 

I admit it. I know nothing about dance.

I don’t know how to dance, nor how to ‘fisk’ an artistic criticism of a modern dance performance.

In fact I think it’s fair to say that I know as little about the art of moving rhythmically to music, using prescribed or improvised steps and gestures, as Guardian dance critics know about the political contours of the Middle East.

Thirty-four of the ninety-two words in Judith Mackrell‘s review of a Birmingham performance by the Israeli dance company Batsheva (Guardian, This Week in Dance, Nov. 10) dealt with the Israeli-Conflict. Or, more specifically, more than one-third of Mackrell’s piece focused on the West Bank and Gaza.

Here’s her “review”.

While I was unable to locate any evidence that Naharin made such a comment about Gaza – and, in fact, the characterization of the territory as “occupied” has been rejected by Hamas leaders themselves - the larger issue is why a Guardian correspondent specializing in artistic criticism feels compelled to examine the political beliefs of the director of an Israeli cultural institution.

It’s as if, for those on the Guardian Left, all Israelis, from all walks of life, now require a sort of moral exoneration by journalists – those routinely bowing to the cult of ‘Palestinian Solidarity’ – if they are to be admitted into the international cultural community.

The BDS movement against Israel is as marginal as it is unsuccessful, and whatever political capital it possesses is due merely to the acquiescence by the radical chic clique of political and cultural posers to its malign agenda.

12 comments on “Guardian dance critic praises Batsheva’s ‘effective nursery of talent’ AND declares Gaza ‘occupied’

  1. The Guardian doesn’t do this with other countries involved in territorial disputes.
    They are racists,pure and simple.

    • Gaza is still under Israel’s control, since Israel controls Gaza’s airspace, nearly all its fishing waters and one-third of its arable land. Plus Israel controls five out of the six crossings between Gaza and the world, and restricts entrance/exit of goods and people to and from Gaza.

      • That said, the BatSheva dance company is fantastic. It’s especially great to watch their performances at home in Tel Aviv.

    • There is no ‘territorial dispute’, Censorship. The Palestinian territory (West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip) is currently occupied by Israel, which builds settlements in this territory in violation of international humanitarian law.

  2. Or, more specifically, more than one-third of Mackrell’s piece focused on the West Bank and Gaza.

    Or, more specifically, more than one-third of Mackrell’s piece focused on the dickhead protesters expected to “attend” performances.

    Still a positive little review, mind!

  3. “the larger issue is why a Guardian correspondent specializing in artistic criticism feels compelled to examine the political beliefs of the director of an Israeli cultural institution.”
    Maybe it’s the same reason a certain foreign correspondent felt the need to critique an American TV series “Homeland,” complaining of “crude stereotypes” of Muslims, while dishing out his own crude stereotypes of Israelis, Americans and “Hollywood.”
    I guess they’re both just radical chic bigots.

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