Annual Pontian Genocide Memorial Seminar to be held in Melbourne


The Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) will host, in collaboration with Pontiaki Estia, the Annual Pontian Genocide Memorial Seminar: Pontus the Opera, on Thursday, 16th May 2024, as part of the Greek History and Culture Public Seminar Series.

In this lecture, Dean Kalimniou, a well-known lawyer, poet, and short story writer within the Greek community, will delve into the perception of Pontus, often depicted as a secluded enclave with its distinct cultural traits, challenging this notion by exploring its historical interconnectedness. He will explore how Pontus has fascinated the Western psyche, becoming a muse for the creation of opera and classical music.

The stereotype of Pontus as the ‘other’ is both augmented and confounded, leading to a discussion about externally and internally imposed Orientalism and how this affects identity formation.

This significant event serves as a poignant reminder of the tragic events of the Pontian Genocide, commemorating the lives lost and honouring the resilience of the Pontian Greek community. People are invited to participate in this solemn occasion to remember and reflect, ensuring that the memory of the Pontian Genocide remains alive in people’s hearts and minds.

The event will take place at the Mezzanine Level of The Greek Centre, located at 168 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne. The seminar is open to the public, and attendees will have the opportunity to engage in discussions with the speaker after the lecture.

Pontian Greek Genocide Remembrance Day

May 19 marks the official Pontian Greek Genocide Remembrance Day, commemorating the tragic events of the systematic persecution and mass killing of Greeks residing along the Black Sea coast during World War I and the subsequent Greco-Turkish War. Recognised by the Greek state in 1994, this genocide signifies the Ottoman Turks’ ruthless campaign to eradicate or forcibly remove the indigenous Christian communities of Anatolia, among them the Pontic Greeks.

Dean Kalimniou bio

Konstantinos Kalymnios. Photo: Facebook.

Dean Kalimniou is a lawyer, poet and short story writer within the Greek community. He has published seven poetry collections in Greek and translated the works of many local Greek authors into English. He has also published translations of Papadiamantis’ short stories in the critical anthology “The Boundless Garden. Selected Short Stories.” Recently he released his first bilingual children’s book “Simela and the Magic Kemenche,” followed by another one in 2024, “The Librarian from Cappadocia.”

Event details:

  • When: Thursday 16 May 2024, 7pm
  • Where: Greek Centre (Mezzanine, 168 Lonsdale St, Melbourne)
  • Entry: Free




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