Watch an interview with Professor Dimitris Papanikolaou (Oxford) on the topic of the BBC Greek Service (1939-2005), which was situated in Bush House on the Strand. A second interview, again hosted by Koraes Professor Gonda Van Steen, will feature the work of a research team that will be delving into the archives of the BBC Greek Service.
Contributed by Dr George Giannakopoulos, Visiting Fellow, Centre for Hellenic Studies, King’s College London. George is also the author of this essay published in Jacobin Magazine on 25 March 2021.
Take a look at this recent episode in the podcast series ‘International History Now’, which I produce with my LSE-based colleague Dr. Dina Gusejnova. In this episode we discuss key aspects of the Greek Revolution with Profs. Mark Mazower, Katherine E. Fleming, and Effi Gazi.
The day of 25 March 1821 is celebrated annually in Greece as Greek Independence Day, a day that marks the birth of what some have seen as the first nation-state in Europe after post-revolutionary France. A series of localised revolts against Ottoman rule gave rise to a broad revolutionary wave that swept parts of the country. By the end of the 1820s, interventions by different European powers and the rise of philhellenic sentiment secured the state’s autonomous existence from the Ottomans. This development came at the price of greater dependence upon the so-called Great Powers: Britain, France, and Russia. As Greece celebrates the bicentennial of the events of 1821, we examine the dimensions of Greek dependence and independence from different angles. Was the war of independence a stand-alone event or part of a transnational process of revolutionary activity? How did the heterogeneous populations (Jews, Muslims) within what became the Greek nation-state experience the revolution and its aftermath? What kinds of sovereignty did Greece gain and how did its place in the world change over time? Finally, how is the revolution remembered in Greece today?
Mark Mazower, Ira D Wallach Professor of History at Columbia University and founding director of the new Columbia Institute for Ideas and Imagination
Katherine E. Fleming, Provost of New York University, Alexander S. Onassis Professor of Hellenic Culture and Civilization in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at NYU
Effi Gazi, Professor of History at the University of the Peloponnese and a member of the editorial board of the journal Historein Music by Κυριάκος Τζωρτζινάκης, 4 Δημοτικές Εικόνες – Του βουνού (Four folk Images: Of the Mountain) (1975), recording by Andreas Vlachos (2021).
Prof Gonda Van Steen interviews Dr Kostis Kalantzis. He is currently a lecturer at the Department of Culture, Creative Media and Industries at the University of Thessaly (Volos, Greece). His new book, ‘Tradition in the Frame’, explores the ambivalence of a society expected to conform to outsiders’ perception of the traditional even as it strives to enact its own vision of tradition.
See more of Kostis Kalantzis’ work here.
The Hellenic Centre has put together an exciting programme of events to commemorate the bicentenary of the Greek War of Independence. This programme can be downloaded below.
Take a listen to this podcast introduction to the 21in21 events programme. It draws special attention to the upcoming and very timely panel discussion of January 28, 2021, hosted by Professor Kevin Featherstone, Director of the Hellenic Observatory at LSE. The other speakers are Koraes Professor Gonda Van Steen and Dr George Giannakopoulos (King’s College London).
The 2020 edition of CHS’ newsletter is available to read below.
In conversation with Prof. Gonda Van Steen, with the generous technical support of Dr George Giannakopoulos, King’s College London, and with special thanks to Dr Marios Psaras, Cultural Counsellor, CHC
An interview about This Way Back, a Cyprus-focused memoir published by Joanna Eleftheriou on 1 October 2020, here presented as part of the Cyprus@60 Online Festival, organised by the Cyprus High Commission, UK – Cultural Section.
We are delighted to invite you to a Virtual Panel Discussion organised in collaboration with British School at Athens and Aiora Press on Friday 2 October at 6pm (UK) / 8pm (Greece).
David Ricks (King’s College London)
Karen Emmerich (Princeton)
Lambrini Kouzeli (journalist and translator)
Joshua Barley (translator)
Abstract: a panel discussion exploring how translators manage the reader’s historical awareness in relation to modern Greek fiction and how these works can be made relevant for a contemporary audience.
Register via Zoom here.
Our friends at the British School at Athens are already preparing for 2021, the bicentennial of the start of the Greek War of Independence. They’ve launched #21poemsinto21, 21 modern Greek poems read by twenty-first-century philhellenes.
Prof. Gonda Van Steen, director of the Centre for Hellenic Studies at KCL, read Kostas Karyotakis’ ‘Delphic Festival’ (featured above). The whole series is available on the BSA website.
‘Towards an English Translation of Andreas Karkavitsas’ The Archaeologist (1904)’
Johanna Hanink (Brown University) is working on a translation of Andreas Karkavitsas’ 1904 novella ‘The Archaeologist’, to be published in 2021 with Penguin Classics. This will be the first Penguin Classic edition of a work by a Modern Greek prose author. The novella, written in the same year that Alexandros Papadiamandis’ ‘The Murderess was published'(1903), is an allegory for the tensions, neuroses, and challenges of the still-young Greek nation state. It tells the story of Aristodemus and Dimitrakis Eumorphopoulos, descendants of the illustrious Eumorphopoulos line (read: the ancient Greeks), who are struggling to regain their family’s glory after the downfall of the Khan family (read: the Ottomans) that has subjected them for centuries. The brothers, however, disagree about the best path forward: Aristodemus, the “archaeologist,” believes that they must look to the past—to their family’s ancient language and artifacts—while Dimitrakis insists on embracing the present.
The novella touches on several key themes in Modern Greek history: the “language question,” the putative “Romaic” versus “Hellenic” binary, the pitfalls of foreign philhellenism, the burdens of αρχαιολατρία and προγονοπληξία, the significance and symbolism of the material past, and the complications of defining a Greek national identity. It is, to be sure, a disturbingly nationalist tract, but it is also an important witness to many literary, cultural, and historical developments in the Greek nation state.
You can listen to a preview of the seminar here: