Dr Anastassios Anastassiadis (Associate Professor of History and Phrixos B. Papachristidis chair in Modern Greek Studies, Department of History and Classical Studies, McGill University), "Writing the global history of a forgotten army: The Allied armies of the Orient in WWI Greece"
More than 600,000 Entente soldiers from around the world were at one point camped in WWI Greece. Between 1916 and 1918, there were 250,000 of them stationed in and around Thessaloniki, a city of 170,000 inhabitants at the time.
However, the story of these Allied Armies has mostly been cast to oblivion, despite not only their role in terms of the outcome of the war but also their huge impact in terms of the biopolitics, meaning their contacts with the civilian population in a variety of forms: infrastructure, transportation, housing and food logistics, medical care and hygiene and even governance.
Based on a current multi-partner research project, this talk will address some of those points and also touch upon the reasons this presence disappeared from the collective memory, both in Greece and in certain Allied countries like France.