The Palestinian Nakba will be 75 years old on 15 May. Palestinians all over the world will commemorate the “Catastrophe” when nearly 800,000 of their ancestors were driven at gunpoint from their homes and land, and 500 of their towns and villages were wiped off the face of the earth in the ethnic cleansing that started in historic Palestine between late 1947 and mid-1948.

The depopulation of Palestine carried on for months; in fact, for years after the Nakba was supposedly ended. But it has never actually ended. To this day, Palestinian communities in East Jerusalem, in the southern Hebron hills, in the Naqab Desert and elsewhere, are still suffering the consequences of Israel’s quest for demographic supremacy. And, of course, millions of Palestinian refugees remain stateless, denied their basic political and human rights.

Erasure or steadfastness: how the Nakba came to define the collective Palestinian identity