Beneath the Olive Tree

GR, US 2014, D Stavroula Toska, SC, P Sophia Antonini, Stavroula Toska, C Sophia Antonini, E Lauren Beckett Jackson, M Toa Zervas, N Olympia Dukakis, Print colour, DCP, 76 min, greek./engl. OV with engl. SUB  

The departure point for this film is a series of notebooks created during the Greek civil war of 1946-49 and first discovered years later, under an olive tree. Inside their pages, diary-like, deported women recount their experiences in Greek concentration camps. Many of them were active in the resistance under Nazi occupation. Actress Olympia Dukakis, who serves as the film’s narrator, was also the individual who originally called director Toska’s attention to the unique documents.

„Stavroula Toska began doing her own research into this Greek history, which was previously unknown to her. She discovered that her own grandmother on her mother’s side was among the women deported to the island of Trikeri, one of several on which the women’s camps had been erected. The silence of the schoolbooks corresponds to the silence in the family. Stavroula Toska is confronted with the aching inability of the mother to speak, which renders the deep individual trauma palpable. The silence of Greece’s public institutions indicates the trauma to society that is still present today.“ (Nia Perivolaropoulou, Festival Publikation Views of History, 2019)

Followed by a conversation with the director and Elli Nikolaou, protagonist and survivor of the greek women concentration camps

Hosts: Athina Petsou and Nia Perivolaropoulou

WED 27.11.19


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