Lessons from a Greek island

From the “Saint of Greek Letter,” Alexandros Papadiamandis

by Anestis Keselopoulos


Alexandros Papadiamandis was the most important literary figure of nineteenth-century Greece and arguably of modern Greek literature. Through his lively, tender, and profound short stories of the simple lives of the Orthodox faithful of his native island of Skiathos, Papadiamandis reveals a world of organically lived Orthodoxy, a world largely lost in the disintegrating order following Greece’s War of Independence with a growing adoption of western values. As with Dostoevsky, Papadiamantis enjoyed close friendships with holy men of his age, noteably St. Nicholas Planas. Also like Dostoevsky, he does not portray a romantic, ideal world but rather a profoundly human world of struggle that always has the possibility of transfiguration through life in Christ and His Church. Overlooked and largely rejected by academics for many decades, Papadiamandis’s work is finally coming into its own. New translations of most of his works are being published. Professor Keselopoulos, in Greece’s Dostoevsky, reveals with great warmth and sympathy, the spiritual depths and Orthodox richness of Papadiamandis through his depiction of the traditional life of his native Skiathos, a living liturgy. He also shows how Papadiamandis’s creative work, as he is an authentic bearer of the Church’s tradition, becomes tradition. As with Dostoevsky, Papadiamandis’s faith transforms his work, providing it with an authentically Orthodox spiritual dimension absent in most modern art. Professor Keselopoulos’s book is an entrancing marriage of profound theology and the beautiful world Papadiamandis describes.

Cover type: Soft
232 pages
Edition #1 published in 2011 by Protecting Veil.
ISBN: 978-164-3770-23-5

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Language: English