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Raja Shehadeh

Kirsty Young talks to Palestinian lawyer and writer Raja Shehadeh, founder of the human rights organisation Al-Haq.

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the Palestinian author and human rights activist, Raja Shehadeh.

Born in Ramallah in the West Bank, his life and writing has been dominated by displacement, struggle and a search for justice. His father was murdered in 1985 and aside from chronicling the unhappy history of his family and his homeland, he's also co-founded the Palestinian human rights organisation Al-Haq - which monitors and documents violations by all sides in the Middle East conflict, publishing reports and detailed legal analysis on its findings.

Amid the heavy weight of his work he somehow finds time to nurture a glorious garden growing grapevines and pomegranates.

He says of his work, "When you write your thoughts and feelings and emotions ... then you can move on to new ones. Otherwise, they will keep rotating in your mind and you will go in circles".

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 20 Jun 2014 09:00

Music Played

  • Fairouz

    Nehna Wl Amar Jiran

    • Reminiscing With Fairuz.
    • Voix De L'Orient.
  • Ella Fitzgerald & Duke Ellington

    It Don't Mean A thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)

    • Duke Ellington & Friends.
    • Verve.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

      Scheherazade, Symphonic Suite, Op. 35

      Performer: London Symphony Orchestra. Performer: Pierre Monteux.
      • Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade.
      • Decca.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18

    Performer: Lang Lang. Performer: Orchestra of the Mariinsky Theatre. Performer: Valery Gergiev.
    • Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2 Paganini Rhapsody.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Richard Wagner

    Rheingold! Rheingold!

    Performer: Vienna Philharmonic. Performer: Georg Solti. Performer: Oda Balsborg. Performer: Hetty Plümacher. Performer: Ira Malaniuk.
    • Wagner: Das Rheingold.
    • Decca.
  • Antonín Dvořák

    Piano Quintet No. 1 in A Major – the finale

    Performer: Goldner String Quartet. Performer: Piers Lane.
    • Dvorak Piano Quintets.
    • Hyperion.
  • Richard Wagner

    Isoldes Liebestod

    Performer: Philharmonia Orchestra. Performer: Birgit Nilsson. Performer: Leopold Ludwig.
    • Birgit Nilsson, Opera Arias.
    • EMI.
  • Franz Schubert

    Fantasy in F minor for Piano Four Hands

    Performer: Edward Said. Performer: Diane Walsh.
    • Selves and Others: A Portrait of Edward Said.
    • Not commercially available..
  • Book Choice

    • The Arabian Nights (1001 Nights)

  • Luxury Choice

    • A packet of seeds


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Raja Shehadeh
Producer Cathy Drysdale


  • Sun 15 Jun 2014 11:15
  • Fri 20 Jun 2014 09:00

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