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The Make-Believe Space: Affective Geography in a Postwar Polity

By
Yael Navaro-Yashin
Yael Navaro-Yashin

Yael Navaro-Yashin is Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Newnham College. She is the author of Faces of the State: Secularism and Public Life in Turkey.

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Duke University Press
ISBN electronic:
978-0-8223-9513-3
Publication date:
2012

The Make-Believe Space is a book of ethnographic and theoretical meditation on the phantasmatic entanglement of materialities in the aftermath of war, displacement, and expropriation. "Northern Cyprus," carved out as a separate space and defined as a distinct (de facto) polity since its invasion by Turkey in 1974, is the subject of this ethnography about postwar politics and social relations. Turkish-Cypriots' sociality in a reforged geography, rid of its former Greek-Cypriot inhabitants after the partition of Cyprus, forms the centerpiece of Yael Navaro-Yashin's conceptual exploration of subjectivity in the context of "ruination" and "abjection." The unrecognized state in Northern Cyprus unfolds through the analytical devices that she develops as she explores this polity's administration and raison d'ĂȘtre via affect theory. Challenging the boundaries between competing theoretical orientations, Navaro-Yashin crafts a methodology for the study of subjectivity and affect, and materiality and the phantasmatic, in tandem. In the process, she creates a subtle and nuanced ethnography of life in the long-term aftermath of war.

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