Professor George Kanarakis presented “A Cross-Cultural Journey. Australian Hellenes and Indigenous Australians in contact.”
Part of the series “In the Footsteps of Hellenism” presented by the AHEPA NSW INC Cultural Foundation ‘Kostis Palamas’
A cross-cultural journey: Greek and Indigenous Australians in contact
Ένα διαπολιτισμικό ταξίδι: Έλληνες και Αυτόχθονες Αυστραλοί σε επαφή The AHEPA NSW Cultural Centre “Kostis Palamas” has inaugurated an initiative that aims at renewing its long-standing reaching out to the Greek community. Through this initiative the Centre intends to broaden its presence within the Australian society, on the one hand, and to re-structure its public talks program, on the other. At the same time, the Centre hopes that through this renewed engagement with the cultural scene of Hellenism in Sydney it will continue –this time in a fresh way– the educational output it had produced for consecutive years through the running of the “Hellenic Open University” (2007-2017). The present initiative is titled Pathways through Hellenism and consists of monthly lectures by invited academics and researchers on very interesting aspects of the diachronicity of Hellenism. The talk series Pathways through Hellenism is not interested in the aspects of Hellenism that more or less constitute the bulk of the great narrative of the historical journey of the Hellenes. On the contrary, it is interested in those aspects that usually –or even systematically– are over- looked or undermined. It focuses on the small narratives, the stories of people, texts and monuments, which –like other small pathways– have woven time and again and in various ways, inconspicuously and unwittingly, but simultaneously in a decisive and permanent manner, the global historicity of Hellenism. It is precisely this historicity that the Centre “Kostis Palamas” aspires to bring forward and reassess in light of the erudition and expertise of distinguished students of Hellenic civilisation from Australia and overseas. In 2019 the series Pathways through Hellenism will last from February to November, hosting nine speakers in total. With topics from the Classical, Hellenistic, Byzantine, post-Byzantine and Modern phases of the diachronicity of Hellenism, this series promises a passage via pathways that surprise or provoke with the vistas they open up, as well as with the clearings they reveal in the rambling landscape that Hellenic thought and experience have formed. Medea, Philip and Alexander, Bactria and Egypt, heresies and divine philosophers, Greek- Australian literature and encounters with Indigenous Australians, the Orthodoxy of the Byzantine emperor... these are the topics that will keep you company throughout this year’s journey at “Kostis Palamas”. uu Emeritus Professor George Kanarakis has taught linguistics and carried out research on Modern Greek Studies for more than 40 years, based at Charles Sturt University. He is an internationally acclaimed researcher in the area of Hellenic Diaspora studies and has authored twenty books and more than fifty book chapters and journal articles. Amongst his books in English the following deserve special mention: Greek Voices in Australia: A Tradition of Prose, Poetry and Drama (1987; rpr 1991), In the Wake of Odysseus: Portraits of Greek Settlers in Australia (1997), and The Legacy of the Greek Language (2017).