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Accepted Paper:

Laugh in the time of Greek crisis – the case of PASOK.  

Author:

Io Chaviara (Panteion University of Athens)

Paper short abstract:

PASOK, the first greek socialist-democratic party, during the greek crisis has been transformed from an object of credibility & worship into a cult, trash & troll object. Throughout this paper the relation between laughter, national imaginative & crisis’ reasoning -blaming narratives is highlighted.

Paper long abstract:

PASOK (Panhellenic Socialist Movement) was the first socialist-democratic party in Greece. After achieving a landslide victory in the 1981 parliamentary elections it dominated the political landscape in Greece. Apart from 19 years in power, it had overwhelming support in unions, local administrations, grass-roots organization, etc. In 2010, the year the Greek financial crisis was introduced as such in the international and national media, PASOK was governing. In order to deal with the bailout, PASOK signed a memorandum with the IMF, the European Commission and the European Central Bank. This signified the starting point of the humanitarian crisis that followed due to harsh austerity. During the years of the Greek crisis, PASOK has become a laughing matter. PASOK, 45 years after its founding, has been transformed from an object of credibility and worship into a cult, trash and troll object. PASOK the former Greek mass party is now being laughed at in various digital and physical spaces of everyday life (social media, theme parties, everyday use of language, etc). This paper reflects on the above mentioned “qualities" of PASOK as social practices and their functions in time of crises regarding the socio-political sphere and the national imaginative. Finally throughout this paper the relation between laughter and crisis’ reasoning (blaming) narratives is highlighted.

Panel Irre05b
Laughing at the system: highlighting absurdity and failure through humour