London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

Community building: Local Press coverage of the incorporation of refugees from Asia Minor into the Greek State

Author(s) Diamantopoulou, A.  
Publisher London: CiCe  
Year 2012  
Editor P. Cunningham & N. Fretwell (eds.) Creating Communities: Local, National and Global  
Age group -  
Community building is not something new nor is it solely future oriented; on the contrary, it can be equally examined with respect to historical events. The Asia Minor Catastrophe in 1922, which resulted in the two million refugees arriving in Greece, had a great impact on the economic, social, cultural and educational fields in Greece. The millions who arrived needed to become part of the fabric of Greek society but Greece was unprepared to receive and incorporate the refugees and inadequate measures were taken by the State. Nevertheless, the refugees from Asia Minor altered and improved the economic, social, cultural and educational characteristics of the Greek population and became an increasing component of the labour force; becoming, in fact, a community of note. Both the Catastrophe and its consequences dominated the Press of the time, with the local presses in particular dedicating many articles to the issue. This paper studies the role of the media in community building by examining the position that local newspapers maintained towards a) the refugees as a community, and b) their incorporation into the local community. Our study seeks to look at how the local Press approached this issue and how it disseminated it to the local community. For the purposes of this study quantitative and qualitative content analysis will be used. Keywords: community, Asia Minor Catastrophe, refugees, incorporation, alteration of the characteristics of the population, component of the labour force

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