Ethno-religious identity consciousness among the Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities on the island began to develop into ethno-nationalism and later into antagonistic nationalism during the British period – 1878-1960. Although different perceptions of identity existed much earlier among the two communities on the island, the inconsistent policies of the British administration, which changed according to its interests in the Mediterranean, allowed for an environment conducive to the politicization and manipulation of these different perceptions of identity.
During the XARKIS artist residency and subsequent festival with the residents of the Greek village of Polystpos, we discussed their identity issues. The villagers speak English because the area of this place was dependent on the British administration until the 1960s. I tried to approach each one individually, to build a dialogue by incorporating the previous speakers’ statements into further questions. Together we wrote a story in English, which one of the villagers later translated into Greek.
It turned out that the story previously written in English was a different story than the one told in Greek. In the video, the statement translated by the translator is at the top.