The project team - comprising Associate Professor Nick Doumanis, Professor George Kouvaros and Dr Efrosini Deligianni - is engaging directly with the community to collect 200 oral histories of post-war migrants to discover their ideas, traditions, beliefs, feelings and motivations. “It focuses on how ordinary Greek families lived and the things they valued and achieved,” explains Doumanis, one of the researchers in the team. The project is also asking for official documents from leading Greek organisations and for historical memorabilia from families including photographs, home movies, letters and diaries. These are being digitised to create an interactive online resource.
By providing a historical window into the lives of Greek migrants in the 1950s and 60s, the archive will provide a rich collection for scholars, students and journalists. “The story of Greek migration is not just about a government immigration policy which encouraged people from around the world to settle in Australia, it was also about Greek migrants deliberately creating a new kind of life,” continues Doumanis.