Soci e partner

Provincia di Ravenna

Comune di Ravenna

Fondazione del Monte

Cassa di Risparmio di Ravenna

Istituto per i Beni Culturali Emilia-Romagna

Memoria e Ricerca

Political and verbal violence in interwar Greece

di Nikos Vafeas
in Memoria e Ricerca n.s. 13 (2003), p. 69

This article investigates the relationship between physical and verbal violent practices in the political struggle in interwar Greece. First, it tries to establish a typology of violent modes of behaviour adopted by political actors; according to this typology, in interwar Greece one can sketch two distinct “ideal types” of political violence, each one having its own characteristics and corresponding to the two different, but parallel, historical processes that marked the social and political history of the country during the above-mentioned period: a) what is called the “National Schism” and b) the emergence of the labour movement, that provoked a strong and constant reaction to the other socio-political forces. Upon this typology, it is further examined how, within each of these two forms of political conflict, physical and verbal violent practices are articulated. The main argument is that, contrary to the violence of the National Schism, the main characteristics of which are a rotation to the roles of the “performer” and the “victim” by the members of the two opposed political camps, its manifestation “in waves”, among which a period of détente intervenes, as well as its complex relationship with verbal violence, the violence of anti-communism is characterized, on the one hand, by a consolidation at the roles of the “performer” and the “victim” and, on the other, by a tendency of continuity and evolution. Moreover, in this case the relationship between physical and verbal violence is constantly affirmative while the latter either prepares the ground for the manifestation of the former or it tries to legitimize it a posteriori.