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Open Access 2 The Green Line

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2 The Green Line

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Chapter Summary

This chapter considers how The Green Line fits into the narrative of Francis Alÿs's oeuvre and through which mechanisms it was able to hit a nerve locally as well as globally. It discusses the green line in Alÿs's Walk through Jerusalem as the locus where various kinds of dialectics meet and are dissolved, incarnating both simplicity and complexity, separation and linkage, inflexibility and fluidity, arbitrariness and purpose, irony and seriousness, and art and politics. At the end, discussions of the various types of dialectics embodied in Alÿs's protean line will bring out the paradox in Alÿs's use of a line, the most concrete manifestation of the idea of borders, to defy and contest boundaries, including also those between the local and the global, representation and abstraction, life and art, and conflict and solution.

Keywords: Francis Alÿs's oeuvre; Green Line; Jerusalem



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