Modern Greece: A Civilization On The Periphery

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This clear, balanced book explores the dilemma of Greece, the font of European civilization. Despite its classical past and EU membership, Greece has been unable to escape the limbo of being “nearly developed.” Illuminating the impact of borrowed “western” institutions on Greece’s traditional culture, the authors analyze the paralyzing consequences: a political process dependent on personal relations and a civil society dominated by a highly centralized bureaucracy. State dominance, Legg and Roberts argue, has ...

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Overview

This clear, balanced book explores the dilemma of Greece, the font of European civilization. Despite its classical past and EU membership, Greece has been unable to escape the limbo of being “nearly developed.” Illuminating the impact of borrowed “western” institutions on Greece’s traditional culture, the authors analyze the paralyzing consequences: a political process dependent on personal relations and a civil society dominated by a highly centralized bureaucracy. State dominance, Legg and Roberts argue, has turned politics primarily into a struggle for office. This emphasis on political conflict has allowed politicians and their supporters to employ emotional nationalist rhetoric to flout democratic rules and to avoid genuine issues. Concluding that the Greek political system’s nature precludes real reform, the authors show how EU opportunities for both economic and political reform have been largely lost. Unfortunately, the aspects of Greece’s “nearly developed” status are mirrored in eastern European states with similar pasts. Indeed, the authors warn that the Greece of today may be the future of many of its neighbors.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Explores the dilemma of Greece, which despite its classical past and EU membership, remains less developed than many other European countries. Shows how opportunities for economic and political reform have been lost due to the political system's reliance on a highly centralized bureaucracy, with chapters on developments before and after WWII, international relations, education and religion, political parties and elections, and political forces and policymaking. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figures
Introduction 1
1 The Problem of Too Much History 9
2 Modern Greek History: From One Revolution to Another 25
3 World War II and After 40
4 The International Factor 55
5 Society and Politics 72
6 Greek Culture: Education, Religion, and the State 93
7 The Constitution in Theory and Practice 111
8 Political Parties and Elections 131
9 Political Forces and Policymaking 155
10 The Political Economy of a Peripheral State 177
11 The Challenge of Maastricht: European, Mediterranean Balkan, or Third World? 194
Notes 207
About the Book and Authors 223
Index 225
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