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Joshua Barley,“Greek Folk Songs: from oral tradition to literary translation”


The Greek folk songs – dimotika tragoudia – make up one of the most important chapters in modern Greece’s musical, linguistic, and cultural history. Not only did these songs play a crucial role in forming the nation’s demotic language, but they have been revered by Greece’s poets ever since they were first transcribed in the early 19th century. Josh Barley will guide us through this rich poetic corpus, discussing their first life as oral tradition in Greek villages, their transformation into written texts, and, finally, their role in Greek nation-building. As a thoughtful translator of these songs in his collection Greek Folk Songs (Aiora Press, 2022), he will consider their translation into English. Finally, we will enjoy these songs in their appropriate context, with singing & music from a celebrated folk musician!

Please register to attend IN PERSON via Eventbrite here:

Thursday April 6th at 18:00, Upper House (Director’s Residence)

Friends Lecture
When: 6 April, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm EEST
Where: – –