Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Breaking the Silence for Peace: Inclusive Research with Displaced Women in Cyprus
by Khavarani, Elodie, M.A., The American University of Paris (France), 2014, 95; 13833849
Abstract (Summary)

Cyprus counts six flags, five armies, three waves of displacement and two ethnically divided areas by one barbed wired line acting as buffer zone to nonexistent violence. Stuck in a dormant conflict state for four decades, research has focused on the conflict, at the expense of Cypriot women, standing on the margins, spoken for and disengaged. This thesis does not aim to resolve the conflict. Filling in women’s silence has been managed innumerable times, while accessing it has not. By testing the PAR theory with the voices of displaced women in Cyprus, the research reveals an embedded cycle feeding the status quo through rooted helplessness, ultimately causing half of a population to remove itself from agency over time, and make way to an unshaken omnipresent conflict serving geopolitical comfort. Women only remain active for their personal reinforcement rather than believing their contributions could influence change. Arguing that the successful engagement of women poses a threat to the status quo, the study analyzes how breaking women’s silence has the potential to design a more efficient peace landscape. While acknowledging the challenges brought by the passing of time and foreign interests, the author suggests that an inclusive research should be undertaken to (1) mobilize women, drive (re)engagement and shift confidence, (2) destabilize the cycle, (3) produce current and contextual knowledge (4) boost peace work through adequate insight informing programmes and policies and allowing them to stick and (5) extend a definition of peace to one owned by women. Inasmuch as the resilience of this conflict makes its transformation somewhat illusionary, inclusive approaches considering the other 50 percent’s perspective can perhaps serve as steps to move what might seem immovable.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Perry, Susan
School: The American University of Paris (France)
Department: International Affairs
School Location: France
Source: MAI 58/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Womens studies, International Relations
Publication Number: 13833849
ISBN: 978-0-438-79601-0
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