Re-organising Everyday Greek Social Reality: Subjective Experiences of the Greek Crisis

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Abstract

Greek society is experiencing significant difficulties due to the global economic recession. Poor politico-economic foundations have left Greece exposed and particularly vulnerable, and unable to manage or control such a major crisis. This exposure has left it unable to control the debt inherited from older generations, which has magnified during the last ten years. In 2013 the national debt stood at 169.1 per cent of GDP, increasing by 19.9 per cent since 2012 (the highest increase in Eurozone) (In.Gr, 2013). This led Greece to seek assistance from the EU and the IMF, which have in turn implemented a sequence of unprecedented austerity measures. Such measures, however, have had a substantial effect on the everyday lives of Greeks. Since such measures have not been implemented in any other EU country before, the possible political and social consequences have not been effectively calculated or, in many respects, even anticipated.
The aim of this study is to investigate the subjective experiences of three different age groups of Greeks (20-29; 30-39; 40-55) in order to understand the impact of the crisis on their everyday lives. It is argued that the experiences of Greeks during the crisis show that dramatic economic, political, historical and social transformations in Greece have two relatively distinct impacts: the undeniable negative and harmful effect on Greeks’ everyday lives as well as the reorientation and re-prioritisation of the way Greeks think, act and behave. As recession expands to more European countries (the most recent being Cyprus), this study provides an initial overview of the possible effect of social changes that these age groups have to confront in their everyday lives due to the consequences of the economic depression.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Politics of Extreme Austerity
Subtitle of host publicationGreece in the Eurozone Crisis
EditorsG Kariotis, R Gerodimos
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.
Chapter9
Pages160-176
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)978-1-137-36923-9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015

Publication series

NameNew Perspectives in South East Europe
PublisherPalgrave McMillan
Volume1

Keywords

  • Greek Crisis
  • Greek social reality
  • Subjective
  • Social reality
  • Politics
  • Extreme austerity

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