Zervas: Making of a Modern Greek Identity
This volume explores the ways in which the teaching of Greek history in Greek schools helped shape a Greek national identity. The period covered (1834-1913) is particularly significant as it was a time of major social, political, and cultural change in Greece. In contrast to most 19th century European narratives whose national identities were mostly developed around contemporary indigenous cultural models, Greece looked to its ancient past when constructing its own concept of a national identity. After the formation of a Greek national school system and universal education in Greece in 1834, an idealized modern Greek identity was constructed and taught that promoted an exclusive and original Greek historical past that would link the modern Greek individual to the culture and history of ancient Greece.
Theodore Zervas is Assistant Professor of Education at North Park University in Chicago and Program Director for the Masters Program in Education. He has been a visiting professor of History at Instituto Technologico y de Studios Superiores de Monterrey in Chihuahua, Mexico. He currently sits on the board of directors for the Illinois Humanities Council.