Review of A Pacifist’s Life and Death (Evi Gkotzaridis) by William Mallinson

καλό απόγευμα! (Good Afternoon!)

Παρακαλώ (please) see below for excerpts from William Mallinson’s review of A Pacifist’s Life and Death: Grigorios Lambrakis and Greece in the Long Shadow of Civil War: a daring historical biography of Grigoris Lambrakis: defender of Greek democracy during the post-Civil War period.

“This is not a book for the faint-hearted goody-goody ‘draw-a-line-under-it’ brigade, since it deals with a subject that the gung-ho extreme right-wing part of the Greek Establishment would like to be forgotten, namely the murder of Grigoris Lambrakis, a Left-inclined Olympian athlete and medical doctor and teacher who became a Member of the Greek Parliament in 1961, despite widespread electoral fraud and intimidation by the Trumanesque Greek authorities.

The author’s passion is clear: her grandfather was murdered in the Greek Civil War, while her father went into self-imposed exile in Paris to avoid being forced to become an informer for the Greek Junta’s police. Yet she manages to detach herself sufficiently to have undertaken wide-ranging research into the environment that led to the brutal killing of Lambrakis.”

“This is a painstakingly written book, in a positive sense, with a wide range of sources consulted, as befits a serious historian. A list of abbreviations and a summary of key dates and events would have made it more reader-friendly, but that does not detract from this brave attempt to deal with a subject still considered taboo by much of the Greek Establishment, and to remind us of the importance of being vigilant to protect the flawed democracy that still exists in Greece. Serious students of Greece should read the book.”

– Professor William Mallinson, Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies, 2018

The full review can be seen at:

ευχαριστώ! (Thank you!)

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