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Masculinity and Institutional identity in South Cyprus - the case of `I do not forget¿

By Stratis-Andreas Efthymiou


This paper explores Greek-Cypriot masculinity through the lens of 'I do not forget' and was triggered by personal experiences with educational and military institutions in South Cyprus. The aim is to put forward a theoretical framework enabling a better understanding of Cypriot conflict identities, using an enquiry into institutionalised identities. The iconic image of the mother of the missing persons is mobilised in understanding the inter-constitution of post-war Greek-Cypriot nationalism as based on explicit notions of victimhood, in which the military assumes a key role in ensuring national survival. Through a discussion of two chosen institutions as examples schools and military I highlight that gender discourses have played a vital role in the construction of these specific institutional identities. I am using the evolution of the above slogan to mobilise the idea of identity being transmitted and crystallised through interinstitutional dialogues. 'I do not forget' comes to be seen as operating through meticulous institutional support of constructions of national identity, mobilised through gender. The military takes up some of these impulses and constructs specific militarist masculinities

Year: 2011
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