Irini Savvides


Since its partition in 1963 the city of Nicosia has drawn the attention of artists, poets, and academics. Offering rich possibilities for imagining what lay beyond the fence, both literally and figuratively, the city and its division has been the subject of endless representation in Cyprus. It may seem limiting in a country besieged by partition to choose to discuss poems only by women, but as feminist critic Maria Hadjipavlou has argued in her text Women and Change in Cyprus: Feminisms and Gender in Conflict: ‘In Cyprus women are marginalized at every level of the political and peace process’ (10). This article asks whether this is the case poetically, or if literature has provided a space that allows women to cross over the lines enforced by patriarchy and to present alternatives to the national discourses that revolve around blame and binaries Hadjipavlou cites Mary F. Belenky’s assertion that ‘the male experience has been so powerfully articulated that we believed we would hear the patterns in women’s voices more clearly if we held at bay the powerful templates men have etched in our literature and our minds’ (8). This article in a small way seeks to redress a long-standing gender imbalance by examining women’s voices speaking their pictures of this complex city



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