In "Wedded to the Land? "Mary N. Layoun offers a critical commentary on the idea of nationalism in general and on specific attempts to formulate alternatives to the concept in particular. Narratives surrounding three geographically and temporally different national crises form the center of her study: Greek refugees' displacement from Asia Minor into Greece in 1922, the 1974 right-wing Cypriot coup and subsequent Turkish invasion of Cyprus, and the Palestinian and PLO expulsion from Beirut following the Israeli invasion in 1982.
Drawing on readings of literature and of official documents and decrees, songs, poetry, cinema, public monuments, journalism, and conversations with exiles, refugees, and public officials, Layoun uses each historical incident as a means of highlighting a recurring trope within constructs of nationalism. The displacement of the Greek refugees in the 1920s calls into question the very idea of home, as well as the desire for ethnic homogeneity within nations. She reads the Cypriot coup and invasion as an illustration of the gendering of nation and how the notion of the inviolable woman came to represent sovereignity. In her third example she shows how the Palestinian and PLO expulsion from Beirut highlights the ambiguity of the borders upon which many manifestations of nationalism putatively depend. These chapters are preceded and introduced by a discussion of "culturing the nation" and closed by a consideration of citizenship and silence in which Layoun discusses rights ostensibly possessed by all members of a political community.
This book will be of interest to scholars engaged in cultural and critical theory, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean history, literary studies, political science, postcolonial studies, and gender studies.
"This rigorous and admirable study contributes to a new understanding of the discussion of nationalism vis a vis cultural production and politics. It is a model for the kind of work we need to see more of - engaged, erudite, considered, and full of historic detail and nuanced analysis." - Caren Kaplan, author of Questions of Travel: Postmodern Discourses of Displacement "An insightful analysis of a truly impressive array of literary, cinematic, archival, and ethnographic materials." - Ted Swedenburg, coeditor of Displacement, Diaspora, and Geographies of Identity
|Introduction: Culturing the Nation|
|National Homogeneity and Population Exchanges: Who Belongs Where?—Greece 1922|
|The Gendered Purity of the Nation: Sovereignty and Its Violation, or, Rape by Any Other Name—Cyprus, 1974|
|Between Here and There: National Community from the Inside Out and the Outside In—Palestine, 1982|
|Thinking Citizens Again: Culture, Gender, and the Silences of the (Never Quite) Nation-State|
|Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.|
Series: Post-Contemporary Interventions / Latin America in Translation
Number Of Pages: 250
Published: 17th December 2001
Publisher: Duke University Press
Dimensions (cm): 30.8 x 7.2 x 2.4
Weight (kg): 0.562