Hot Spots: Beyond the "Greek Crisis"

In: Historical Events

Submitted By jonathancalloway
Words 596
Pages 3
This forum focuses on the debt crisis in Greece (the 2010 EU/IMF “bailout” and subsequent austerity measures), as well as the various challenges that have been posed to the violence of neoliberal “adjustment.” The brief articles presented here have been solicited from observer-participants in the debates and protests, but also in the intimacies and banalities, defining everyday life in crisis Greece. The outlines of the crisis are widely known. Indeed, Greek society and its travails have never before been so visible to the global media eye. The aim of this forum is not so much to fill in this familiar outline of crisis with ethnographic detail as to trouble its parameters.

The first section Debt, Responsibility and “Reform” treats debt not as a statistical fact, but anthropologically as a complex discourse on morality, responsibility, obligation and reciprocity. Against the breathless synchronicity of “breaking news” and (endless) speculation on the denouement of the crisis, these pieces insist on historicizing and globalizing. Piercing the blatant Orientalist tropes dominating international and often domestic reporting, they plumb the social, political and economic forces that have led to the current impasse, but also the political efficacy of “crisis” itself in legitimating the agenda of “structural reform.”

The second section Precarity and Protest centers on the escalating violence of the crisis and the emergent politics of protest. The December 2008 revolt, which first galvanized world media attention on Greece, returns again and again in the analyses as a formative moment, which brought to the fore the malaise and anger of Greek youth (the “generation of 700…600…500 Euro…”) and inaugurated new forms of political action now prominent in the movement of Greek indignants (aganaktismenoi) that began in May 2011 (i.e., networking through social media, a…...

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