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Interactive Documentary Archive

Gaza-Sderot – Life inspite of everything

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Project type: Web


Here is the description of the project (from their website):

This project reports on life as experienced by men, women and children in Gaza (Palestine) and Sderot (Israel): their lives and their survival on a daily basis. Under difficult living conditions and the threat of air attacks and bombings, people do keep on working, loving and dreaming. Life in spite of everything.

In order to document this will to live, short chronicles (2 minutes each) will be shot by both Israeli and Palestinian teams, day after day for two months. These short stories will follow six characters from Gaza and six from Sderot. In this way, we will have a new story of each character every week, and the viewer will be able to follow them intimately for 10 weeks. The stories will be aired via the Internet and users will have a personal, interactive and non-linear access to these contents on the site ARTE France which will include the videos, blogs, forums, links etc.

Gaza Sderot is an original project broadcast by, the official site of ARTE, the French-German cultural television station, in coproduction with an Israeli team – Alma Films/Trabelsi Productions in cooperation with The Sapir College in Sderot, a Palestinian team – Ramattan Studios, a French documentary production company – Bo Travail ! and an interactive production company

On Saturday, October 25th, “Gaza Sderot” won the “Prix Europa” which took place in Berlin.

Find out more:

Watch & explore

Read a Time (2009) article about the project

My comments:

This is a fascinating project!!! For me everything works well on it: the use of mixed media, the interface, the emotional impact and the political meaning if it. By shooting daily on both parts of the israelo-palestinian conflict Gaza-Sderot manages to bring us all “back to normal life”: we see “normal” people dealing with life as they can, with their ups and downs. We get time (2 months) to get attached to them, to have some sort of bond with them.

When the project was shot (in 2008) we could follow the life of those people in a weekly basis, but the site also holds its strength now, was after the shooting is finished. The existance of a blog also allows viewers to exchange opinions and to keep alife the debate that this web-documentary wants to create.

I also particularly like the fact that one can browse those stories using different approaches: time, faces, maps and topics. By doing so one can get attached to a character but also position him/her and check what other people say about the same topic. This lateral linking creates a web of associations that feels very satisfying. Somehow the designers managed to use hypertext interactivity in a fulfilling way: they got the right words and the right linking logic.

I think this project is extremely well put together… and it is very strong. Do you share my enthusiasm?

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This entry was posted on Saturday, January 5th, 2008

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  1. On March 31st, 2013 at 22:44 nadia wrote:

    It is for sure an interesting system for telling multiple stories. Thanks for sharing.

  2. On March 31st, 2013 at 22:45 nadia wrote:

    It is for sure an interesting system for telling multiple stories.

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