Alexander Billinis to give Melbourne seminar on the Serbs in Corfu


Alexander Billinis will give an online seminar titled ‘The Heroic Retreat – Serbs in Corfu’ on Thursday, June 6 at 7pm as part of the Greek Community of Melbourne’s (GCM) History and Culture Seminars.

Seminar synopsis

World War One started with the Austro-Hungarians attacking Serbia. After a heroic defence of their homeland for over one year, the Serbian Army, faced with a triple assault by the Austro-Hungarians, the Germans, and the Bulgarians, opted not to surrender to the enemy but to retreat from Serbia via Albania to the Adriatic Coast, a tragic route known to Serbs as the “Albanian Golgotha.”

Over 400,000 thousand Serbs, military and civilian, together with 23,000 Austrian prisoners of war, started the journey. By the time the Serbs reached the Albanian coast, and the Allies made the decision to relocate them to Corfu in still-neutral Greece, that number was down to about 170,000.

For a time, a mini-Serbia arose in Corfu as the Serbian Army licked its wounds in a friendly atmosphere, and with the Greeks and other Allied armies, geared up for a revenge attack on the Central Powers on the Salonika Front. This is their story.

Alexander Billinis


Αlexander Billinis is a political science lecturer at Clemson University in Clemson, South Carolina. Parallel to his academic work he earned a master’s degree in history last year, with an emphasis on the Greek Merchant Marine, and he will soon be commencing a PhD in digital history.

He writes prolifically on subjects pertaining to the Greek Merchant Marine, the Greek Diaspora, the Balkans, and Byzantium. Prior career experience includes work as an attorney, as an international banker, and as a journalist. He has lived and worked in the US, the UK, Greece, Bulgaria, Chile, Hungary, and Serbia. In addition to his master’s degree in history, he has a J.D. in international law from American University and his undergraduate degree in Western and Eastern European Studies from Georgetown University

A native of Salt Lake City, Utah, Billinis has roots in the island of Hydra, whose history and culture he writes about prolifically. He is also an honorary member of the Hydra Nautical Academy Alumni Association (Λεσχη Αποφοιτων της Ναυτικης Σχολης της Υδρας). A citizen of both the United States and Greece.

Event details

  • When: Thursday 6 June 2024, 7pm
  • Speaker: Alexander Billinis
  • Seminar: The Heroic Retreat – Serbs in Corfu
  • Where: This seminar is online only via the Greek Community of Melbourne’s YouTube or Facebook pages.




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