Athens: do not read newspapers, informed on the walls

Athens: brotherhood and solidarity to revive the dignity of people

Possibly John Lennon would have sung something like this on his return from Athens in this dark Summer of 2015. The home of art, philosophy and history is today more likely to be associated with numbers and percentages: 27% overall unemployment, more than half the young people without a job, more than 3 million people living below the poverty line or excluded from society, and the malnutrition of 440,000 school-age children. According to what history has taught us and what we see with our own eyes economic crisis is the same as psychological crisis: the uncertainty about the future and loss of hope are undermining  the fundamental pillar of society: the family is falling down.

Walking the streets of Athens one has the sensation not only of seeing but of being physically touched by the crisis. It is depressing to think that one of the “stars” on the European Union flag is specifically that representing Greece. The crisis has created in Athens the same effects as a war: abandoned buildings, rubble, collapsed walls, shells of cars in the streets, washed-out glances, interminable queues of people waiting for a hot meal. It is embarrassing to be conscious that we are in 2015 and it seems impossible that there will be a way out of this catastrophe.

Neos Kosmos Festival Foligno

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