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Title: ‘Αθήνα – η πιο ξένη πρωτεύουσα’ : urban estrangement in Greek poetry, 1912-2012
Author: Kakkoufa, Nikolas
Awarding Body: King's College London (University of London)
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2013
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This dissertation examines the use of language by major Greek poets of the twentieth century as a means to express their feelings of estrangement towards the Athenian urban environment. In doing so it takes into consideration the history of how the rapid creation of the modern Athens has been reflected in literary representations, beginning with Palamas’ Satirical Exercises (1912). Each chapter begins by setting out the methodological framework of a specific textual device in relation to which representative relevant poems are examined. The introductory chapter focuses on Athens, as a Metropolis, and the changes the city had to go through in order to become an urban capital – highlighting the differences between literary representations in prose and poetry. It also offers a typology of estrangement, taking into consideration various types of estrangement that the city can be felt to provoke. It also asks how a mapping of the city connects to national identity as seen by poets who in most cases are not natives of Athens but newcomers to the city. Chapter I investigates a range of poems with reference to onomastics and as well as social anthropological theories regarding the connection of space and time. Chapter III employs code switching and the theory of liminality to show how poets express their estrangement towards linguistic tropes, that are representative of social mobility and life in the urban context. Chapter IV, finally, investigates the gap between written and oral discourse, especially the poets’ debts to the tradition of the folk songs of ξενιτιά and their effort to include their work in a form of Greek oral tradition. This PhD thesis rehabilitates Palamas as an influential figure for Greek poets’ engagement with modernity and proves continuity in the employment of such textual devices as ways to express urban estrangement, from the beginning of the twentieth century till its end.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available