Absence of memory: has there ever been an Italian occupation for the Greeks?

Author/s Despina-Georgia Konstantinakou
Publishing Year 2015 Issue 2015/279
Language Italian Pages 27 P. 472-498 File size 188 KB
DOI 10.3280/IC2015-279004
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In examining Greek collective memory about the Second World War, a paradox emerges clearly: that there is no homogeneity in the ways in which the three occupations experienced by the country are remembered. While Greeks have not forgotten the terror caused by the Germans nor the indelible mark left by the Bulgarian occupation (albeit mostly on the people of Northern Greece), the majority of Greeks view Italians in a completely different light. They represent the average Italian soldier as generally peaceful, someone who never intended to inflict any harm, who merely served his country and waited until the war was over in order to go home. The myth of the "good Italian" soldier has prevailed and shows no signs of abating even today, as demonstrated by the fact that official Greek historiography has never dealt with the issue of the Italian occupation, and by the almost complete lack of a serious and meaningful public debate concerning the memory of the Italian army.

Keywords: Second World War, Greek collective memory, Greece, Italian occupation, myth of the "good Italian soldier"

Despina-Georgia Konstantinakou, Assenza di memoria: ma per i greci c’è mai stata un’occupazione italiana? in "ITALIA CONTEMPORANEA" 279/2015, pp 472-498, DOI: 10.3280/IC2015-279004