Dr. Penelope Papailias, College year at Athens

Event Date: 
Thursday, November 16, 2000 - 13:30

"California Dreaming: Reworking Greekness in the Tale of Brooklis" A talk centering on Yiorgos Yiannis Elias Mantas, a migrant worker who lived in California between 1902 and 1909, working in a cement factory in Napa Junction and later as a pushcart-peddler of fruits and vegetables in Los Angeles. Mantas returned in 1922 to his native Arcadia, where he died in 1966. We do not know much about how the returned migrants--or, to use the more evocative Gringlish term, Brooklides, narrated memories of 'America' in the course of everyday life. Dr. Papailias considers how Mantas used his experiences of migrant labor to reflect on working-class life and the meaning of 'patriotis' in the wake of the civil war, which claimed the lives of his three sons. Penelope Papailias received her doctorate in cultural anthropology from the University of Michigan in October 2000. Her dissertation, “Genres of Recollection: Histories, Testimonies and the Personal Archive in Contemporary Greece” examines the politics of cultural memory in Greek society in the post-Cold War period through an analysis of the practices and poetics involved in the documentation of personal experience. She lives in Greece, where she teaches anthropology at College Year in Athens.