Weaving the Country Together: Identities and Traditions in East Timor - This 2002 honours thesis by Natalie Pride was first published on the East Timor Law Journal some years ago. ETLJB recommends this thesis, and Ms. Pride for her insightful writing. As she notes, "[e]mploying a methodology of setting textile development comprehensively within an historical context and placing the material heritage of East Timor within the foreground ...represents an opportunity for innovative and relevant research, in which the standard view of Timor as an island dominated by violence can be rethought and even challenged." (emphasis added)
Here is an extract from the Introduction.
The rich cultural heritage of East Timor provides the historian with an ideal balance to prevailing historical approaches, which place conflict and violence at the forefront. Academic literature and the international media have focused on experiences of war in East Timor, and therefore engaged with just one aspect of the historic dialogue. This new nation in fact has much more to offer the historian than gendered political, colonial and military discourses. Throughout the region, war is associated with images of masculinity, coolness and hardness; essential to these regional worldviews is the existence of a complementary opposite – thus war is balanced by warmth, femininity, and textiles. This paper will place textiles, rather than conflict, at the forefront in an attempt to address the textual imbalances of current historical accounts.
East Timor Law Journal - Towards the rule of law in Timor-Leste