Τετάρτη, 25 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

Πρόσκληση από Χαλικούτι και Μπεγίρι : 2μερο εκδηλώσεων για την αυτοδιαχείριση στην πράξη.





Τα συνεργατικά εγχειρήματα Χαλικούτι και Μπεγίρι ( συνεταιρισμός το Κιβώτιο) έπειτα από 14 συνολικά μήνες λειτουργίας σας προσκαλούν σε ένα διήμερο συζητήσεων γύρω από το ζήτημα της αυτοδιαχείρισης στους εργασιακούς χώρους. 
 
Η κατάθεση της σύντομης εμπειρίας μας, η παρουσίαση των θεωρητικών μας  εργαλείων, η θέση του εγχειρήματος στον κινηματικό χάρτη και οι προοπτικές του είναι κάποια από τα βασικά σημεία που θα μας απασχολήσουν. Την εκδήλωση πλαισιώνουν ανάλογα συνεργατικά εγχειρήματα από Αθήνα, Θεσ/νίκη, Ηράκλειο και Ιταλία. 

Στο χώρο θα διατίθενται προϊόντα  προς ενίσχυση του αγώνα των εργατών της Βιο.Με καθώς και βιβλία από συνεργατικές εκδοτικές. 


ημερ/νία: 27-28 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013                          ώρα:   18:00

τόπος: Μικρό θέατρο , Γοβατζιδάκη 17, Ρέθυμνο           

Τρίτη, 24 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

The heart of Eleutherna beat for a very long time, from the Neolithic era to the Byzantine period







“If you were to imagine Crete as a human being, Eleutherna would be its heart.” I am standing with Nicholas Stampolidis, a professor of history and archaeology at the University of Crete, on a small hill overlooking the archaeological site of Eleutherna, some 30 kilometers from Rethymno. From this rise, we can see the entire area of the university’s excavation of the site, which began in 1985. The view is breathtaking, with swaths of olives trees, carobs, oaks, plane trees, laurel bushes and walnut trees across the terraces of the hilly landscape. It is the horizon especially that is most striking.

The archaeologist takes me by the arm and turns me 360 degrees so that I can take in the majesty of the peaks of Psiloreitis, Talaia, Aravanes and Tympanatoras, the latter of which took its name from the myth according to which local tribesmen would beat their shields with sticks, making a drumming sound that would cover the sobs of young Zeus so that Cronus would not hear him and devour him as he did his other children. Further away, on the horizon, I can see the sea shimmering in black-and-white tones under the hot, bright sun. I am standing on ground under which one of the island’s most important city-states is buried, between ancient Knossos and Cydonia.

The heart of Eleutherna beat for a very long time, from the Neolithic era to the Byzantine period, when it vanished from the map. When the Culture Ministry granted the University of Crete permission to excavate the site, no one could have imagined that it would uncover a palimpsest showing a constant human presence that dates back to 3000 BC, architecture from the late Minoan period, prosperity in Homeric times and a great burst of growth in the Roman era. The decline of Eleutherna was gradual, starting in the 8th century AD and culminating in the 13th century. In the 14th century, the Venetians prohibited the unruly Cretans from living in the fortified city due to fears they would create a rebel stronghold.

The excavation has uncovered hundreds of objects and remains of homes, but it has been focused mainly on the rich bounty yielded by a cemetery used from the Geometric period, which, like one end of a piece of string, will lead to more discoveries.

Ideal location

As we descend toward the imposing yet elegant shelter that covers the excavation site of the cemetery, Stampolidis explains why the ancients chose this particular spot to build their city.
“It overlooks the sea, but is also invisible to enemies approaching by boat. It is only one-and-a-half hours’ walk from its port. It is on a hill that can be reached only through a narrow pass, providing excellent natural protection. No weapons during antiquity could shoot this far,” Stampolidis says.

“There is fresh running water nearby, as well as woodland that provided lumber, land for farming or grazing, and a quarry. We have found 252 species of herbs and wild greens that were used in many different preparations, and the spot forms a crossroads for those traversing the island either north to south or east to west,” the archaeologist adds.

Stampolidis says that there is also ample evidence of lively commercial activity.

“Many of the grave offerings we have found were brought from other parts of the Aegean – Cyprus, Asia Minor, Phoenicia and so on – proving that the city had developed commercial ties beyond Crete,” he says.

Protecting nature

With the modern-day village of the same name behind us, we entered Ancient Eleutherna, which is protected as an archaeological site but also as a natural woodland by law. The excavation teams that have worked at the site have planted rows of trees to delineate pathways, while the site of the museum that will one day house all the finds is just a short walk away, on the other side of the hill.

One of the most impressive observations about the site is the care taken by the archaeologists to preserve the natural environment, allowing visitors to take a mental leap back in time and imagine the location as it was when it was first settled – nestled in the protective embrace of the woodland.

Stampolidis confirms that preserving the natural environment was one of his team’s biggest concerns.

“We are interested in Eleutherna becoming a paradigm of how we can showcase ancient sites. You can’t hear passing cars, and, other than the shelter, all of our interventions are discreet, retaining the purity of the landscape. We used large rocks rather than cement to divert the flow of a stream, the electricity cables are all below ground, thanks to the Public Power Corporation, and all the steps are made of rock and earth. Almost everything here is made by hand, and the best part is that we – the archaeologists and the workers on the dig, which is funded by the University of Crete – did it ourselves,” says Stampolidis.

The excavation’s chief archaeologist also explains how the university managed to appropriate the land under which Eleutherna was buried.

“I find funding myself by approaching people who love the place but want to remain anonymous. It is thanks to them that we could buy up all the land that comprised the woods in which the site is located,” he explains, adding that the project has also received the full support of the local community.

“I think that they have all realized that Eleutherna will never have all the annoyances, say, of Knossos, where there are souvlaki joints and souvenir shops next to the archaeological site. They love the excavation, they protect it and they have supported our work in every possible way,” Stampolidis adds.

The Homeric-era cemetery

The archaeologist and I walk downhill to the shelter. Nikos Stampolidis knows every rock and tree here like the back of his hand. After all, it was one of the first digs he ever participated in and he was not yet 30 years old when he started.

“The broader area of the Eleutherna excavation was separated into three zones. The first picks went to archaeologists Petros Themelis and Thanasis Kalpaxis. I took the zone west of the hill on which the acropolis stood. I had observed that the earth there had a grayish tint unlike the yellow earth in other parts. This often occurs because of rotten leaves, but it could also be attributed to ash from wood fires. The first dig we made revealed finds just a few inches beneath the surface. It was the crematorium. We proved that the ancients used to burn their dead in this spot. We also found that the locals had used a lot of material from the site to build the terraces along the hills,” Stampolidis explains.
“Do you need luck in archaeology?” I ask.

“Of course. But in which sense? As the piece that completes knowledge. Manolis Andronikos knew where to look for for Vergina, but he was lucky in finding a grave that was intact,” says the professor.

We are now standing on a necropolis that dates back to Homeric times, unique in the Mediterranean region. You cannot but feel awed. We see the burial sites, some consisting of large ceramic coffins, funerary monuments and a fascinating maze that goes deep underground, revealing the different chronological periods during which the cemetery was used.

“Once the excavation is finished, we will make special cases to house the bones of the dead that are now being examined by anthropologists. They belong here, not in the storage room of some museum. Who am I to disturb their peace?” asks Stampolidis.

The archaeologist moves between the graves, talking about some of the most striking finds he and his team have made. The excavation so far has revealed remains ranging from aristocratic warriors to very simple burials. One of his most touching finds was the grave of a 12-year-old boy, whose dog was buried in a small marked grave right beside him. One of the graves that contained the remains of several women from the same aristocratic family also contained ornate jewelry.

Prisoners of war

The ancient cemetery of Eleutherna also provided the answer to the age-old question that had split Plato and Aristotle – whether the Greeks killed their prisoners of war.

“These were not human sacrifices, but the justice of war, ritualistic revenge,” explains Stampolidis. “Beside the funerary pyre of a prince who died in battle, we found the skeleton of another man who we believe had his elbows tied together behind his back. We also found a knife and a whetting stone nearby. Traces of his skull were later found at the prince’s feet and were singed by the fire, suggesting the sequence of events. He was a prisoner of war who was executed in retribution. One of the workers on the dig told me the story of Stefanoyiannis, a Cretan hero who was executed by the Nazis in World War II. His fellow fighters saw who it was who had killed him and stole into the enemy camp at night, kidnapped the perpetrator and killed him on Stefanoyiannis’s grave in revenge,” Stampolidis explains.

Every burial site has it own fascinating story. After two hours touring the excavations, we headed back to Rethymno, making a brief stop at the museum, which is currently under construction.

In the car, Stampolidis tells me his own story, a kind of epilogue to our tour: “When I first came here as a young man, I told myself that I would dig up all of Eleutherna before I retired. The hill must have heard me and laughed at my plans. Now that I am older, I am better at hearing what the hill has to say.”

The museum is a very impressive structure that resembles a shelter of sorts. It is slated for completion in 2015 and so far only the exterior has been completed. It will contain an exhibition hall for the thousands of finds made at the cemetery and in the city so that visitors can see the pieces of the puzzle that compose this fascinating site.

From its lofty position atop a hill, it affords a wonderful view of the acropolis and the shelter protecting the cemetery, as well as the entire area where Eleutherna once stood and, of course, Mount Psiloreitis.

Plans for the museum include landscaping the surrounding environment and applying some of the latest concepts in museology. The project is moving apace and is expected to be ready on time, while Stampolidis makes certain that, like at the site, every last detail is just right.




By Margarita Pournara
 

Τετάρτη, 18 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

Inauguration de la place Jacqueline de Romilly





Jacqueline de Romilly aimait la Grèce! Elle n’est plus là pour le dire, c’est pourquoi nous parlons à sa place. Bien qu’elle habitât Paris et Aix-en-Provence, bien qu’elle vienne siéger tous les Jeudis à l’Académie Française, nous savions que son esprit et son cœur étaient constamment tournés vers la Grèce, et particulièrement vers Athènes. C’est pourquoi je remercie la municipalité d’Athènes de son beau geste d’avoir donné son nom à une Place, et de l’avoir choisie de telle sorte que Jacqueline de Romilly n’ait que quelques pas à faire pour rejoindre la Grèce classique, la Grèce du Ve Siècle, qu’elle aimait particulièrement", a déclaré l'ancien président de la République Française, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, lors de l'inauguration lundi à la mairie d'Athènes de la place Jacqueline de Romilly dans le quartier de Thissio.

« Qui veut, qui peut donner un avis sage à sa patrie ? ». C’est le message que nous fait entendre Jacqueline de Romilly du Parnasse où elle se trouve désormais, à un moment tourmenté de l’histoire du peuple hellène, dont les amis de la Grèce, dont je suis, commencent à apercevoir la fin. Elle nous recommande: « Que s’expriment ceux qui veulent, ceux qui peuvent, donner un avis sage à leur patrie »", a conclu M. Giscard d'Estaing.

Le maire d'Athènes, Georges Kaminis, la présidente du Centre culturel hellénique de Paris, Alexandra Mitsotaki, à laquelle revient l'initiative de cette cérémonie, et le ministre de la Culture, Panos Panagiotopoulos ont notamment assisté à la cérémonie d'inauguration de la place Jacqueline de Romilly.

Δευτέρα, 16 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

Thèmes dominant l’actualité grecque.




Education :

Le syndicat des enseignants du secondaire (OLME) a décidé hier l’organisation d’une grève de cinq jours du 16 au 20 septembre en signe de protestation contre la mise en mobilité de professeurs, ainsi que contre le nouveau projet de loi sur l’éducation. L’éventualité d’une nouvelle grève (du 23 au 27 septembre) n’est pas exclue. De même, les professeurs des écoles privées s’orientent vers l’organisation d’une grève de 48 heures les 16 et 17 septembre.

Par ailleurs, les professeurs de l’université d’Athènes et de l’école polytechnique d’Athènes ont décidé de fermer pour une semaine les deux établissements, en signe de protestation contre la décision du ministère de l’éducation de mettre en disponibilité 1.765 agents administratifs (sur 6.239 au total). 

En outre, une grève sera organisée à partir de demain et jusqu’à vendredi par les agents administratifs de l’ensemble des universités et instituts supérieurs d'enseignement technologique (TEI) du pays. De son côté le ministère de l’éducation adopte une attitude d’expectative, estimant que les grèves ne seront pas largement suivies

Tourisme : 

Le journal Kathimerini fait état de la hausse du tourisme en Grèce, due aussi aux troubles politiques en Egypte et en Syrie. Le journal parle de « vague de réservations étrangères » qui se poursuivra en octobre et en novembre. 

De bonnes perspectives touristiques sont prévues également pour 2014, de grandes agences de voyage, notamment britanniques, ayant déjà fait des réservations pour l’année prochaine. L’administrateur délégué de l’agence TUI, l’un des plus grands groupes de tourisme au monde, se rendra vers la fin septembre en Grèce.

Πέμπτη, 5 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

Many Cretan endemic plants in danger of extinction.




As unbelievable as it may sound, Greek kitchen staples such as sideritis (mountain tea), dittany and even oregano are becoming endangered in the mountains of Crete, raising fears among the authorities, in Hania especially, who have been studying and monitoring the phenomenon for the past few years.

“We did not want to publish our concerns earlier because we wanted to be sure, but now we can say it: The way that the endemic plants of the region are collected and the overall environment represent serious threats,” said Polymnia Sklavaki, an official with the local authority’s forestry department.
According to scientists, the problem has become especially acute over the past couple of years due to the fact that herbs are being uprooted for sale and are not cultivated, while there have also been instances of illegal collection in areas that are protected under the European Union’s Natura network program.

“It is absolutely essential that we have better management of the natural habitats of these herbs, which make a priceless contribution to the area’s biodiversity. People who want to collect the herbs should be issued with licenses and it should only be for household consumption,” said Sklavaki.

Costas Economakis, an agricultural scientist and researcher at the National Foundation for Agricultural Research (ETHIAGE), estimates that Cretan mountain tea (Sideritis syriaca) quantities have dropped by 30 percent in the space of one generation (30 years). “This is an endemic plant and if it disappears from Crete, it will disappear completely,” he said.
The causes of the depletion, he argued, are not just restricted to the uncontrolled collection of the plants, but are more complex.
“Over-collection, overgrazing and changes to the ways that land is used all lead to the impoverishment of the genetic material that exists in the mountains of Crete and this has an effect on the environment, as well as on the region’s economy,” said Economakis.

A number of different factors go into the special qualities that can be found in the endemic herbs that grow on Crete and these are dependent on the preservation of the ecosystem, which is under threat from overdevelopment and overgrazing.
 “In the past, the sheep would be brought down to the lowlands for part of the year, allowing the mountains to blossom in spring. Now they are never brought down because of the tourist resorts on the coast, which means that not only are they eating young plants, but they are trampling them as well and preventing them from growing,” said Economakis.
 
“Meanwhile, the sheep are also being fed industrial feed. If this continues, there will be no difference between buying meat from Aspropyrgos or from White Mountains of Crete. The special qualities that make Cretan products stand out will be lost,” said the scientist.

Sklavaki has called for stricter supervision of protected habitats, saying that local communities need to be educated about the problem and shown that the island’s genetic capital is at risk and that its further destruction would have a devastating effect on the local economy.
“These herbs should also be cultivated on farms and according to strict regulations,” Sklavaki said. “Demand for oregano in Hania is greater than supply and this is something that needs to be addressed, not with imports or the depletion of wild oregano, but with cultivation.”

Local authorities and environmental groups have also called for the creation of a seed bank that will contain samples of endemic plants, from the Prefecture of Hania especially, in order to preserve all the rare species of herbs and possibly use them for cultivation in the future as well to produce more seeds.
Scientists also note that other than their culinary attributes, many of these plants have excellent curative properties as well and must be preserved for medicinal purposes if for no other reason.

“The DNA of these plants needs to be stored and catalogued so that their use can also be conducted in a rational and organized manner. Bulgaria, for example, is cultivating a strain of Cretan mountain tea for a German pharmaceutical company. We should have protected the species with a designation of origin identifier so that it cannot be grown anywhere else,” said Economakis, who believes that the cultivation of rare endemic herbs could serve as a powerful engine for the Cretan economy.

By Matthaios Tsimitakis


Κυριακή, 1 Σεπτεμβρίου 2013

LA REVUE DE LA PRESSE HELLENIQUE (Politique intérieure)


Le journal « Ta Nea » note que M. Samaras aurait confirmé lors de la réunion la décision du gouvernement sur le rôle purement subsidiaire de la Grèce en cas d’une éventuelle intervention militaire.

Le journal « Eleftheros Typos » Recrutements : dans un communiqué, le ministre de la réforme administrative, M Mitsotakis, a démenti hier les allégations du ministre délégué à l’intérieur, M. Grigorakos, selon lesquelles 10% des recrutements effectués entre 2004 et 2009 ont été réalisés grâce à des faux diplômes qui n’avaient pas été contrôlés par l’ASEP (cf. revue du 29 août)

Le journal  « Kathimerini » Privatisations : relève que le porte-parole de la Commission européenne, M. Simon O’Connor, a démenti hier les informations portant sur la création d’une entreprise qui siègera à Luxembourg et qui sera chargée de la gestion des biens de l’Etat grec. « La responsabilité de la mise en œuvre du programme grec de privatisations relève de la compétence du gouvernement grec et le TAIPED (fonds de mise en valeur du patrimoine privé de l'Etat) devra continuer à gérer les biens publics », a déclaré M. O’Connor en soulignant que les scénarios rendus publics sur la création d’une telle entreprise n’ont pas l’approbation de la Commission européenne, ni de l’Eurogroupe, et par conséquent ne sont pas justifiés.

Le journal « Ta Nea » Education : note que le projet de loi sur le nouveau système éducatif grec concernant notamment le fonctionnement des lycées et les examens d’entrée aux universités a été déposé hier au Parlement.
Par ailleurs, la presse fait état de la chute importante de la moyenne d’entrée aux universités. Selon les résultats des examens, les candidats optent désormais pour les facultés offrant des perspectives de carrière tandis que le critère principal de choix est le lieu de résidence, en raison de la crise économique et des difficultés financières des ménages.

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