Metamorphosis of Athens Post Asia Minor Catastrophe

This presentation is based on content from an undergraduate thesis. The purpose of this thesis is to illustrate the impact of the Asia Minor Catastrophe on Greece during the 1900s, specifically in the capital city, Athens. As a number of factors influenced the advancements of Athens, it is necessary to bring to light the geographical, architectural, and cultural developments that the Asia Minor refugees brought to the city between 1919 and 1922, upon their integration to the Greek society.  The thesis begins with a brief history of the Asia Minor catastrophe, specifically the ethnic exchange that occurred between the Ottoman Empire and Greece.  Both Greek and Turkish citizens who resided in their neighboring countries were forced to return to their “mother” country due to the Greco-Turkish War.  Further to the Asia Minor Greek settlement in Athens, certain areas in the polis, such as Gazi and Nea Filadelfeia, became common residential areas for the Asia Minor refugees. This thesis further grounds the cultural phenomenon that the Greek refugees faced whilst adapting to the Greek culture in Athens, having lived in the Ottoman Empire for a number of years.  These cultural phenomenona include the difference in language, cultural traditions, music/ arts, and trade skills brought from living in the eastern diaspora.

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