My research explores interdisciplinary representations of silence in traumatised women’s testimony, where silence acts as a protective mechanism. Gathering lost and silenced stories of Cypriot lacemakers and building on emerging feminist theory which positions silence as a rhetoric of the deliberately unspoken, I intend to develop a community pedagogy to witness silence, including how gaps may be heard, shared, and ultimately encourage voice. Just like the deliberate creation of holes, a defining feature of the lace, these silences are often intentional; conscious gaps embedded into the fabric of a story. ‘Lefkaritika’ is a style of lacemaking unique to rural Cyprus, where my paternal family is from. It inspired the tablecloth in Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper and in 2009 was inscribed onto the United Nation’s ‘List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity’, in recognition of its international significance and immediate threat to its survival.
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