Feminism in Cyprus: Women’s Agency, Gender and Peace in the Shadow of Nationalism
This article explores the ways through which feminist and women’s agency is articulated in the Cypriot context through the paradigms of nationalism, peace and conflict. It does so to broaden our understanding of gendered and peace agency in troubled and divided societies, where complex and conflicting discourses meet. Analyzing data from interviews with feminist and women’s groups’ representatives, it examines how nationalism and women’s approaches to gender, politics, peace and conflict enable or restrict feminist and women’s agency. It finds that a strategic essentialism approach has initiated a reconfiguration of gender(ed) power relations, women’s agency and peacebuilding processes. It argues that when this approach is combined with feminist theory and praxis and the employment of transnational peace paradigms, the possibilities of feminist and women’s agency increase, as long as feminist scholarship and grassroots activism inform each other through dialogue. Therefore, it highlights the nuanced and complex dialectic between essentialist and anti-essentialist feminist gender discourses. Moreover, it challenges arguments about the rigidly hierarchical relation between local and transnational gendered and peace agency paradigms, by demonstrating their malleability and reciprocity. Thus, it contributes to the debate about the modalities and possibilities of feminist sociopolitical intervention in nationalism- and conflict-ridden contexts.
The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version.
Citation : Kamenou, N. (2019) Feminism in Cyprus: Women’s Agency, Gender and Peace in the Shadow of Nationalism. International Feminist Journal of Politics,
ISSN : 1461-6742
Research Institute : Media Discourse Centre (MDC)
Peer Reviewed : Yes