Thrice a Stranger - Hellenism, Kemalism, Zionism

By Saffo Papantonopoulou, Thu 08 January 2015, in category Recordings


In the context of the forthcoming inter-communal protest march for a "De-Militarised Nicosia 2015", which will be held on both sides of the borders dividing Nicosia on Saturday, 28th of February, Syspirosi Atakton starts a circle of events that will peak on that day.

Thrice a Stranger: Hellenism, Kemalism, Zionism

The rise of nationalist ideologies in Salonika and Eastern Mediterranean

In 1926, Levi Eshkol, who would later be prime minister of Israel during the 1967 war, visited Western Thrace, and observed the settlement of Greek refugees from the 1923 Greek-Turkish population exchange. He remarked at the time that it was an β€œβ€˜an enormous and interesting project,” which could provide a model for the creation of the Israeli state. In this presentation, I draw together some of the unlikely similarities between Greek, Turkish, and Israeli nationalism. Focusing on the impact of Hellenization on the Jewish community of Salonica after the Greek invasion of 1912, I argue that nationalisms which claim to be mutually antagonistic, often converged when it came to the re-arrangement of people and re-definition of their ethnic identity.