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E. Tchkoidze:European Greece: some political and Cultural observations

Greece is one of the 12 member states of the European Community which is the central nexus of a new European architecture of economic, political and cultural relations. The principal process defining a new Europe is a process of integration, of which Greece is now a firm adherent. As cultural templates of an asymmetrically generative relationship, Greece and Europe have been of singular significance to each other. Today as Europe is pulling itself together in response to globalizing trends, Greece is closer to it than ever before.

Given their history, the comparative advantage of the Greeks has always been cultural. The love-hate relationship Greeks have had with their language, their past, and their culture is in profound ways paradigmatic of what it means for any human being to establish a recognized identity and live by it.

As a result of extraordinary sequence of events since 1987, Greece faces a critical period of lively debate and deep self-examination concerning its values, institutions and place in the universe. Developments in the European Community toward the future economic and political integration, the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the reemergence of ethnic conflict in the Balkans and the triumph of nationalism impact of every aspect of Greek life and present major challenges for the Greek state. “Modernity” as conventionally agreed was very late coming to Greece in relation to other parts of Europe. Yet culturally and historically the Greek nation-state is not traditionally remembered for its place in the modern period, but rather in relation to the contributions of Hellenism in antiquity.

Perceptions of the “Europeanness” of Greece have been of vital importance culturally, politically and ideologically for Greece in the modern period and especially in the period since World War II. Throughout the second half of the 20th c. Greece has constantly reemphasized the she is European.

It is very important to focus on Greece’s political and cultural priorities. This kind of observations contributes significantly to draw some important conclusions in terms of Georgia’s European perspectives given that Greece is the “closest” European state to Georgia historically and culturally. Of course, we are referring to the medieval period and not to the modern time. In addition to this and maybe as a result of this factor, cultural affinity between Greece and Georgia is more than simply definite. So, in this context, the Greek paradigm serves as a very important factor to make some parallels with Georgia’s attempts to be integrated into the European family.

Mainly political (such as, Greek-Georgian current political systems) and cultural (relations between tradition and modern challenges) will be topics of our paper.

Category: Abstracts | Added by: margalita (18.10.2009)
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