Presenter: Stephanie Jacobs
An ethnographical and intercultural exploration of the personal and community-level relationships that once existed in the mixed villages of Cyprus shows that, in the 1930s to 1950s, before nationalism and conflict, Greek Cypriots (Christians) and Turkish Cypriots (Muslims) lived peacefully together. On a personal level, strong intercultural practices and traditions, including intermarriages, koumbaroi, milk mothers, and deep friendships existed within many former mixed villages of Cyprus.
Evidence of strong community-level relations included people speaking each other’s language, attending each other’s schools, working together, sharing in each other’s celebrations and entering the religious house of the ‘other’: all of which paint a picture of a once harmonious and integrated society. Many genuine friendships existed and, in many respects, the two groups lived as a single community. Deep connections with the ‘other’ have persisted through decades of conflict, nationalism, propaganda, war and displacement.
Stephanie Elisabeth Jacobs is an Australian government public servant with a professional and academic background in international relations. She has a broad range of experience within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Attorney-General’s Department, and the former Department of Immigration and Border Protection. She has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from Monash University and a Master of International Relations from the University of Melbourne. Stephanie is a PhD student at Flinders University; her research explores the relationships between Greek and Turkish Cypriots from formerly mixed villages of Cyprus.
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