At the moment, the name ‘Greece’ has negative connotations: debt, austerity, recession, political failure, and social deprivation. But the present is only a slender time-slice in Greece’s long history, and Greece has been and remains the source of many riches of thought, art, culture, and landscape. Directly or indirectly, this heritage has shaped and enriched the lives of us all, and on this website people who love Greece — philhellenes in the simple sense — celebrate what Greece has given them and the world.
If you love Greece and would like to contribute something to the site, then please do so. A contribution can be as simple as a scan of an old holiday photo and a few words of reminiscence. Follow this link for details of how to contribute. Alternatively, you can post a short message directly on the messages page.
There is also a Philhellenes twitter account, where I post links to news stories and comment pieces that have caught my eye. (Linking to an opinion piece does not mean that I endorse its content, merely that I think it is worth reading.) A weekly digest of these tweets is posted automatically to this blog. (Messages to the Philhellenes twitter account are also posted to my personal twitter account, along with messages on many other topics.)
Keith Frankish, Site Editor
The banner of this site is a detail from a photograph of the new Acropolis Museum in Athens by the photographer Giorgos Vitsaropoulos. Giorgos kindly gave me permission to use the image and to reproduce the full version of the photograph below. It is an evocative image, which beautifully contrasts the permanence of the ancient statuary with the fleeting human visitors — a contrast mirrored in the clouds passing across the deep blue sky above.
More of Giorgos’ work, including further images of the Acropolis Museum and shots for the Greek Tourism Organisation, can be found on his website.
[Click on the image to view at a larger size.]
Howard Wettstein is Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Riverside. His research interests lie in the areas of philosophy of language and philosophy of religion, and his many publications include the books Has Semantics Rested On a Mistake?, and Other Essays (1991), The Magic Prism: An Essay in the Philosophy of Language (2004), and The Significance of Religious Experience, and Other Essays (2012).
Howard and his wife took a vacation in Greece in 2008, and he has kindly sent me some photos from that trip. He writes, “Here are a few from the best vacation of our lives, in Athens, Milos, and Sifnos, in 2008. The power of Athens, for one who has studied philosophy, goes without saying. But the islands were wondrous. It’s painful even to think about the crises that are affecting Greece and the Greek people at the present time. Here’s hoping that it’s short lived.”
From left to right, by row, the photos are of (1) Milos, (2) Athens, (3) Athens, (4) Sifnos, and (5) Sifnos.
[Click on the images to view at a larger size.]
István Aranyosi is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey. His research interests lie in the areas of philosophy of mind and metaphysics, and his publications include the books The Peripheral Mind and God, Mind, and Logical Space (both 2013). István has kindly contributed the following reminiscences and photograph to philhellenes.org.
“As a kid, in the 1980s, I was known to my parents’ entourage as a Greek geek, having read and reread the legends of Mount Olympus, then a bunch of books the local librarian was happy to provide me, all connected to Greek culture and civilization.
“Lately, I have been more connected to Greek culture as part of my teaching and research in philosophy. However, I was most impressed in 2008, during my first visit to Greece, when what I saw was straightforward, outgoing, and freedom-loving people, with good sense of humour and good sense of business. One night in Rethymno, Crete, a sea food restaurant owner spotted me among a large crowd walking by, exclaiming: ‘You are my customer!’ – a couple of days before, I had eaten in his restaurant the best sea food ever since.
“The picture below shows me shopping for some saffron in Rethymno.”