This socialist history of modern Greece tells the story of its rebirth in struggle, the heroic resistance to Nazi occupation, the civil war and its aftermath, the colonels’ dictatorship and its overthrow, the rise and fall of PASOK, the debt crisis, the popular uprising of 2010-12, the election of SYRIZA, the referendum and the subsequent capitulation. What lessons can Greece’s experience teach those campaigning against austerity throughout Europe?
Roger Silverman is a teacher and a former journalist and political activist. He has connections with Greece going back to the 1970s, and is in contact with prominent members of SYRIZA and Popular Unity.
“If Europe gets torn apart, it will start at the bottom corner. Greece, the first country in modern times to elect a radical leftwing government, faces economic war from Brussels and a tide of refugees from collapsing states to its east. At this critical moment Roger Silverman*’ book views the origins of the Greek crisis using the lens missing from most media coverage: class, class conflict and the problems of a democratic system balanced on deep corruption and oligarchic power.” — Paul Mason, commentator and author of Postcapitalism: A Guide To Our Future and Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere
“In the last four to five years, I have been asked many times by friends from Europe and even Latin America to recommend them a book on postwar Greece. Unfortunately, I always had to answer that there is no such book, not at least in the major European languages, and that there is an enormous gap in the international bibliography of modern Greece. Now Roger Silverman’s book not only fills this gap but goes even further, by covering Greece’s recent political and economic turmoil with up-to-date first-hand information. But this is not its only virtue. Silverman prefers to give the floor to the protagonists and actors in these cataclysmic Greek events, leaving the reader free to judge and draw the lessons of this emblematic modern Greek tragedy. It goes without saying that such a book, written not only for specialists but accessible to almost anyone with an interest in the recent Greek crisis, needs to be translated into other languages as soon as possible.” — Yorgos Mitralias, journalist and member of the Greek Debt Truth Commission, Athens
“Roger Silverman’s excellent and most accessible book engages with the exciting advances and the devastating setbacks of Greek popular movements facing down the powerful and vindictive forces of international finance over the last five years. His analysis of the real possibilities in the first year of the SYRIZA Government is developed from a much needed popular history of the resistance of the Greek people from the War of Independence in 1821 to the present, and from an appreciation of similar developments across the world today.” — Paul Mackney, Co-chair, Greece Solidarity Campaign
“Roger Silverman’s book is the only one I have found which answers the fundamental questions I wanted answered about the tragedy of the Greek people. Nothing happens without reasons, but there are few writers who know how far back to go to provide a clear, honest and readable analysis of the corruption and mismanagement which led to a whole country being pauperised. Clearly written and with hair-raising details of the crisis which has brought Europe close to disintegration, this is a book to learn from.” — Bill Boyle, UK Editor, DatacenterDynamics