Demetriou, P.A (2016) Crossing contested borders: Quid Pro Quo (2011) – a performance act embodying the conceptual and material significance of women’s experience of the divide. In: Utopia at the Border: The Fourth Symposium of the Imaginaries of the Future International Research Network, 20 - 22 September 2016, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany.

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Contested borders not only represent the physical, institutional and legal boundaries of geographical frameworks, but also speak for the disputed processes of a constant negotiation between territory, power and socio-political identity. The Cyprus Green Line, Barbed-wire, ‘Peace-Force’, Buffer Zone are some of the collection of names that personify the geographical frontier, or the twisted iron thorned object that runs horizontally from East to West of the Island, separating the northern from the southern part since 1974. This quintessential symbol of war, exile and migration is not only a ‘technology’ of social control that memorializes the violent history that lead to its forceful establishment; it is not only made out of barbed-wire, sand bags and military troops but it is also a physical manifestation of cultural construction that represents the Cypriot’s political and socio-cultural anxiety. This article addresses an artistic practice that emerged from conflict and struggles of forced migration, focusing on Cypriot performance artist, Christina Georgiou’s, performance intervention 'Quid pro quo' (2011). Georgiou carried her refugee mother across the border, as she carried her children in 1974 (from the North to the South), an intervention symbolic of returning ‘home’. Through the discussion of the piece, the paper asks how performance is used to engage with such crises, through reenacting female refugees’ experiences of encountering technologies of war.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

This paper was also presented at the 'Performance of the Real Research Theme: Ritual and Cultural Performance Hui and Symposium' at University of Otago, New Zealand on 14-15 April 2016 and as a lecture at Bath Spa University, UK, on 1 February 2017.

Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
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Date Deposited: 22 Dec 2016 12:55
Last Modified: 28 Feb 2017 12:42
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