Translated by Elisabeth Jaquette from Arabic
Published by Fitzcarraldo Editions
Minor Detail revolves around a brutal crime committed during the War of 1948. Israeli soldiers rape a young Palestinian woman they find in the Negev desert, killing her and burying her in the sand. Many years later, in the near-present day, a young woman in Ramallah embarks on a journey of discovery into the events surrounding that rape and murder. She becomes fascinated by it to the point of obsession when she reads about it by chance, not only because of its gruesome nature but also because it happened to take place 25 years to the day before she was born. The two sections of the book hover over one another like the maps the unnamed protagonist of the second section takes with her on her journey. The result is a haunting meditation on war, violence and memory, cutting to the heart of the Palestinian experience of dispossession, life under occupation, and the persistent difficulty of piecing together a narrative in the face of ongoing erasure and disempowerment.