Advertisement

Athens, an Alternative City. Graffiti and Radical Tourism

  • Vassilis VamvakasEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Reform and Transition in the Mediterranean book series (RTM)

Abstract

This chapter attempts to examine the increasing significance of graffiti during the economic crisis in Athens. It analyses discourses that consider Athens as an ideal place of provocative aesthetics and political radicalisation both for its habitants and foreign visitors. The study of acclaimed online paper and magazine articles shows that they choose to represent Athenian graffiti mostly as a practice of artistic tourist-worthy reaction full of anti-materialistic, anti-panoptic perspectives and disordered, multicultural humanist sentiments. This positive orientalist approach bearing signs of a renewed classism cannot be interpreted by the usual schemes that examine graffiti in terms of a counter-culture. Other sociological tools have to be utilised in order to conceive the narcissistic, stereotypical and destructive aspect of a trending attitude of radicalism in the modern city.

Keywords

Street art Orientalism Narcissism Subculture Journalism Public space 

References

  1. Chmielewska, E. (2007). Graffiti and Place. Space and Culture, 10(2), 145–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Fotiadi, E. (2016). State Interventions in Public Space in Athens and the Mediatization of the Crisis: Sustaining the Unsustainable Using Precarity as a Tool. European Journal of Cultural Studies, 19(6), 708–723.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Hebdige, D. (2013). Subculture. Florence: Taylor and Francis.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Kramer, R. (2010). Legal Graffiti in New York City. Ethnography, 11(2), 235–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Lachmann, R. (1988). Graffiti as Career and Ideology. The American Journal of Sociology, 94(2), 229–250.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Lasch, C. (2018). The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations. New York: W. W. Norton & Company.Google Scholar
  7. Macdonald, N. (2001). The Graffiti Subculture Youth, Masculinity and Identity in London and New York. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  8. McΝair, B. (2006). Cultural Chaos. Journalism, News and Power in a Globalised World. London; New York: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Panagiotopoulos, P. (2007). City and Political Culture: The Ideology of Authenticity in the Case of Athens. In X. Kalpaktsoglou, A. Z. Poka-Yio, & T. Tramboulis (Eds.), Prayer for (Passive?) Resistance (pp. 99–127). Athens: Athens Biennial.Google Scholar
  10. Said, E. W. (1991). Orientalism. London: Penguin Books.Google Scholar
  11. Sennett, R. (2017). The Fall of Public Man. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.Google Scholar
  12. Stampoulidis, G. (2016). Rethinking Athens as Text: The Linguistic Context of Athenian Graffiti During the Crisis. Journal of Language Works, 1(1), 10–23.Google Scholar
  13. Tsilimpounidi, M. (2015). “If These Walls Could Talk”: Street Art and Urban Belonging in the Athens of Crisis. Laboratorium, 7(2), 71–91.Google Scholar
  14. Tulke, J. (2016). Tales of Crisis from the Walls of Athens: An Exploration of Urban Austerity through the Cultural Practice of Street Art. In B. Schönig & S. Schipper (Eds.), Urban Austerity: Impacts of the Global Financial Crisis in Cities in Europe (pp. 257–270). Berlin: Theater der Zeit.Google Scholar
  15. Tulke, J. (2017). Visual Encounters with Crisis and Austerity: Reflections on the Cultural Politics of Street Art in Contemporary Athens. In D. Tziovas (Ed.), Greece in Crisis the Cultural Politics of Austerity (pp. 201–219). London; New York: I.B. Tauris & Co. Ltd..Google Scholar
  16. Tziovas, D. (2017). Narratives of the Greek Crisis and the Politics of the Past. In D. Tziovas (Ed.), Greece in Crisis the Cultural Politics of Austerity. London; New York: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd..Google Scholar
  17. Zaimakis, G. (2015). Φωνές Διαμαρτυρίας στους Δρόμους της Πόλης. Προσλήψεις της Κρίσης μέσα στο Πολιτικό-εκφραστικό Γκράφιτι [Voices of Protest on Urban Receptions of the Crisis by Political and Existential Graffiti]. Κοινωνιολογική Επιθεώρηση, 2(3), 119–143.Google Scholar

Newspapers

  1. Economist, Guardian, Huffpost, Independent, Lifo, The New York TimesGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Journalism and Mass MediaAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece

Personalised recommendations