GOCNSW and Dr Helen Vatsikopoulos launch publication of Greek Australian stories


The Greek Festival of Sydney, as an initiative of the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW (GOCNSW), has announced the launch a very special publication, ‘HELLENIC DREAMING Greek-Australian Stories,’ edited by the Director of the Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival and Professional Industry Fellow with the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), Dr Helen Vatsikopoulos.

What Dr Vatsikopoulos has put together for the GOCNSW is a unique blend of testaments by 37 prominent Greek Australian contributors ranging in age from early 20s to late 70s, who share their remarkable stories.

Some of the contributors were born in Greece with vivid memories of their migration journey. Others are children of migrants, raised within strict traditional family guidelines, long after such restrictions were largely abandoned back in homeland, Greece. Then there are the grandchildren of migrants with very distinct interpretations of identity and ancestral belonging. They all have so much to share on the distinct Greek Australian hybrid culture that is emerging within our multicultural Australian society.

The publication took three years of intense work, research, collaboration and coordination with distinguished authors, journalists, academics, poets, artists, highly regarded professionals of Greek Australian and Cypriot Australian descent to create a story-telling masterpiece that delves into “who we truly are” as an ethnic minority within a blending amalgamation of people living down under. It has been a long-awaited publication that “explains” our story and will be proudly launched in Greece as well.

Purchase will be available during the Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival and for those who won’t be able to attend, a link with purchasing information will be available after the official book launch on Sunday, 19 May 2024.

File photo from the 2023 Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival in Sydney. Photo copyright: The Greek Herald / Andriana Simos.
File photo from the 2023 Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival in Sydney. Photo copyright: The Greek Herald / Andriana Simos.

“The Greek Orthodox Community of NSW is very proud to have supported and published a book that aims to become a part of Greek Australian history itself by depicting our unique identity and how it has been shaped through the stories of migration that we bequeath to future generations,” President of the GOCNSW, Harry Danalis, said.

“We are truly grateful to have Dr Helen Vatsikopoulos working with us and creating such an important publication for generations to come. Greek Australian stories told by the very people who lived them are the cornerstone of a cultural identification that manifests greatly throughout the Greek Festival of Sydney for the last 42 years,” Chair of the Greek Festival of Sydney, Nia Karteris, pointed out.

“This volume seeks the joy to be found in stories of Greek culture and what sustains us; whether it be community, food, gardening, education, housing or song. This is not a trauma anthology, thought it does access trauma. You will find intergenerational trauma surfacing whether it be from the children of migrants or through examination of historical events. We do not censor any political taboos. It is not an academic publication, though academics have contributed. We wanted to make it accessible to everyone. Our identity is complex and here we explore the hybridity that makes us unique,” Dr Vatsikopoulos said.

“While there has been research into the lives of the Greek migrants and their settlement in Australia, there is still much work to be done into the lives of their children and their grandchildren. This is why we have sought out the dreams and thoughts of the first to third generations. I am particularly proud of including the work of Generation Z.”

A unique opportunity for the Greek Community of New South Wales and the attendees of the Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival to obtain a book that explains to our modern society what multigenerational Greek-Australians are made of.

Event details:

  • What: HELLENIC DREAMING – Book Launch during the Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival
  • When: Sunday 19 May 2024 | 2:00pm – 2:45pm
  • Venue: UTS Business School, Dr Chau Chak Wing Building, University of Technology, 14-28 Ultimo Road, Sydney, Entry via Mary Ann Street.
  • TICKET (to attend the Greek-Australian Writers’ Festival): $15+bf via link https://www.trybooking.com/COTUI

For more information on the programme and to book tickets to selected events, please visit www.greekfestivalofsydney.com.au




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