Economic Reality and Greek Culture

Economic Reality and Greek Culture

You all know how modern Greece became bankrupt, how its population lives under extreme economic conditions, how the government is trying to pay off the debts (though, not that successfully). The IMF process demanded that the entire economy deflated, that the salaries and the prices were reduced, so that Greece became competitive again. Competitive in what, though? Since the euro entered our lives, most Greeks have been living on borrowed money and time. They neither created products nor offered services. Now they have to go back to their roots and find new entrepreneurial ways of survival. One of the avenues they have chosen was to go back to the land and cultivate specialised crops. The other one was tourism.

Tourism has a long history in Greece that actually predates the birth of Jesus Christ. In modern post-bankruptchy Greece it has taken a new meaning. Several local and international organisations are trying to profit from Greece’s long tradition and history. The worst of them put up a banner close to archaeological sites and sell souvenirs. The best of them are devising elaborate schemes. Among them, archaeological theme parks are probably the most promising ones. Recreating antiquity will probably be the best way to attract people like you and me, lovers of history. The feasibility of these parks will not rely entirely on the entrepreneurial spirit of the businessman, though. The state should also give its permission and define the regulations for organising such ventures. In these cases, I sincerely hope that Greek administrative officials will leave behind them old practices and that they will embrace the new and the unknown.

If anything, I expect the Greek state to enhance its touristic infrastructure and provide some funds to starving museums (and archaeologists). People in my profession may be idealistic but they still need to eat!

Economic historian and numismatic consultant


  1. I feel sure the Greek PEOPLE will provide the ingenuity required and trust the government do as they require.I mean,the Romans did a lot for Sparta etc with their ‘theme’ parks.

  2. I’m glad to inform you that the next issue of the “Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies” will have a section dedicated to the effects of the economic crisis on the Greek cultural sector (both public and private).

  3. Any further information available on “elaborate schemes. Among them, archaeological theme parks..”?
    I only know of plans for an Alexander the Great park somewhere in the north.

    • I cannot reveal any more information because the funding has not come through yet. However, when it finishes I will be first in the queue!

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