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Bodies of Evidence: Burial, Memory and the Recovery of Missing Persons in Cyprus

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Volume 20

New Directions in Anthropology

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Bodies of Evidence

Burial, Memory and the Recovery of Missing Persons in Cyprus

Paul Sant Cassia

304 pages, 30 illus., 5 maps, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-57181-646-7 $135.00/£99.00 / Hb / Published (May 2005)

ISBN  978-1-84545-228-5 $34.95/£27.95 / Pb / Published (October 2007)

eISBN 978-1-80073-507-1 eBook

View CartYour country: - edit Buy the eBook from these vendorsRequest a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format)Recommend to your LibraryAvailable in GOBI®


“Extensive fieldwork and truly rich, detailed and contextualized data result in a study depicting the vitiating strategies…that various political authorities on both sides of the ethnic divide employ in order to turn the disappeared into representations of political fantasies, fears, and social aspirations.”  ·  Anthropological Notebooks

“The author writes with remarkable objectivity but also with an empathy towards his subjects and genuine sympathy for the women of the missing, wives and mothers, who are the real heroines of a tragedy so much reminiscent of Antigone”.  ·  JRAI

"…the book is extremely valuable to researchers interested in Cyprus because it offers a frank and sensitive analysis of this highly taboo issue...[It] constitutes an invaluable intervention in the political debates currently unfolding in Cyprus…[it] already speaks volumes [about] the politics of the Cyprus conflict, as well as the anthropology of violence more generally."   · South European Society & Politics

“This book analyses the uses and abuses of the dead, Greek and Turkish Cypriots who died in inter-communal violence between 1964-74. The politicians struggled for advantage by controlling both their mortal remains and the very ways the bereaved could think about them. But finally, some women rebelled, and broke the chain of deception … This disturbing ethnography dissects the cold ruthlessness of power brokers, an anthropology of troubled times, but one which leaves us wiser.”   · Peter Loizos, London School of Economics

“innovative and exciting…”  · Jack Goody, FBA. Emeritus Professor of Anthropology, University of Cambridge


In the course of hostilities between Greek and Turkish Cypriots between 1963 and 1974, over 2000 persons, both Greek and Turkish Cypriots, went "missing" in Cyprus, an island in the Mediterranean with a population distribution of 80% Greeks and 18% Turks. This represents a significant number for a population of only 600,000. Few bodies have been recovered; most will probably not be. All are still mourned by their surviving friends and relatives. The conflict has still not been resolved and the memories are still alive.

Paul Sant Cassia is Reader in Anthropology at the University of Durham, UK, and Editor of History and Anthropology. He previously lectured at the University of Cambridge, UK, where he was Curator of the Anthropology Collections at the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (1985-1990). He was Visiting Professor at the Universities of Paris (Nanterre) (2000), Aix en Provence, and Malta (1992-94). He has conducted anthropological research in the Mediterranean (Cyprus, Greece, Tunisia, and Malta), and has published on politics, banditry and violence, oratory, property transmissions, family and kinship, and ethnomusicology. He is the author (with Constantina Bada) of The Making of the Modern Greek Family (Cambridge University Press, 1992).

Subject: Anthropology (General)Peace and Conflict Studies
Area: Southern Europe


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