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Greece and the Inter-War Economic Crisis$
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Mark Mazower

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780198202059

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198202059.001.0001

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Economic Aspects of Political Collapse

Economic Aspects of Political Collapse

(p.272) (p.273) 10 Economic Aspects of Political Collapse
Greece and the Inter-War Economic Crisis


Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses how the Greek experience of the inter-war economic crisis reveals the complexity of the links between economics and politics — more particularly, between the crisis of economic liberalism and the collapse of parliamentary democracy. Greece's defeat by Turkey in 1922 ended the era of irredentism, disoriented the political elite, and set the tone of nostalgia and pessimism which was present throughout the Republic's lifetime. The backward character of Greece's economy did not condemn her to prolonged stagnation. On the contrary, a backward economy possesses certain recovery mechanisms of its own which help explain why Greece's upswing after 1932 was unusually rapid. Yet in the hands of an uncertain political elite the recovery itself became linked to the crisis of parliamentarianism and in many respects made the economy more uncompetitive and technologically backward.

Keywords:   Greece, financial crisis, economic liberalism, parliamentary democracy

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