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Recognition and emotion : exhumations of missing persons in Cyprus.

Sant Cassia, P. (2006) 'Recognition and emotion : exhumations of missing persons in Cyprus.', in Divided Cyprus : modernity, history and an island in conflict. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. New anthropologies of Europe.


In this chapter I discuss the attempts by some widows of missing persons in Cyprus to recover the remains of their loved ones and give them a proper burial. My aims are threefold. First, I show that although the issue of missing persons in Cyprus is highly politicized, relatives have different and conflicting needs to the agendas of the nation-state. Their attempts to recover what was lost is not "merely" a necessary simulation by their political representatives,; but they are essential for psychic stability. Second, I show that mourning is more than either ritual or emotion, and that it encompasses fundamental cognitive, existential, and identity changes, along the lines hinted at by Pirandello. Finally, I suggest that we should be cautious in about either genderizing emotion or as viewing it as a resistant margin (e.g., Seremetakis 1991). Rather, I suggest that every political order requires its own specific representations of suffering. Emotion and suffering therefore both subverts and sustains the social order.

Item Type:Book chapter
Keywords:Mourning, Ritual, Emotion, Recognition, Revelation.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Record Created:05 Jun 2007
Last Modified:08 Apr 2009 16:33

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