Marcuse, Harold. 2001. Legacies of Dachau: Uses and Abuses of a Concentration Camp, 1933–2001. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Chapter 5. 1946–1949: Emphýlios
The guise under which the islands received anepithymitoi (“undesirables”) was not exactly Nazi Schutzhaft (“protective custody”) but preemptive arrest, which led to peitharheméne diaviosis (“disciplined existence”), presumably to allow the interned to experience the “healing effects of productive work and tight discipline” that the Nazis had proclaimed as the objective of Dachau when they opened the camp on March 22, 1933 (“Die Wahrheit über Dachau,” Münchner Illustrierte Zeitung, July 16, 1933; quoted in Marcuse 2001: 28). Two conceptual categories are reanimated here from the Metaxas and occupation periods: (1) that of the suspicious individual, and (2) that of family and kinship as a separate category of danger.
I cannot remember how I found out that my uncle Stéphanos had been an andártēs, but I do remember him telling us stories from the Resistance, starting when we were very young. He was the only one from our large family who would actually come to our country house on weekends. In those days in Greece, in the early and mid sixties, the work week was still six days long. My mother and my uncle, with my sister and me in tow, would take a taxi from our house, go to my father's job, and then all get into our car and drive to the country. We would usually drive at dusk and get there by evening. The roads were treacherous, and the car could not go very fast, so it would usually take us a bit over two hours to cover the distance of 152 kilometers. That was when my uncle Stéphanos would tell us stories from the war.
One evening I asked him if he had been an andártēs with Zervas (the leader of the Right-wing Resistance army). He shouted at the top of his lungs, so violently that I thought we would have an accident: “Zervas, the traitor, the fascist, what do I have to do with Zervas? I was with Aris”—meaning, of course, Aris Velouchiotes. And he would tell us stories from the war: how they would capture the Germans, how they would torture them, how they would hide, how they would ride on their horses for days on end, without rest, always on the run, how Zervas's soldiers would capture the ELAS soldiers and torture them (and just how they would torture them), how (occasionally) their ELAS battalion would capture some of Zervas's andártes and torture them by skinning them and putting salt in the wounds. He would tell these stories in between stories of the tortures on Yioúra and Makrónisos, leaving my sister and me speechless with fear. He never mentioned that after Makrónisos he was sent to the front, to Grammos, to fight against the Democratic Army, nor did anyone ever mention that the only way in which anyone could be sent to Grammos was to have signed a declaration of repentance, dêlosē metanoias. I did not find out about the Grammos detail until many years after his death, from one of his in-laws, during fieldwork for this book.
Nor did I know that my uncle Stéphanos had a brother. During one of those trips, somehow his brother was mentioned. I said with an incredulity that I still remember vividly, “I didn't know you had a brother.” He started shouting (my uncle Stéphanos had a very liberal relationship to what we call inappropriate language): “A brother? Do I ever have a brother? That faggot [ho poústes], that worm, that awful human [o palianthropos], he was the one who testified against me and they sent me to Yioúra.” Much later I found out that his brother (whose name I was never told) was a gendarme.
Dionysis Savvopoulos used the tune of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” for the lyrics of his song “On Makrónisos, Then” for the film Happy Day (1976), by Pantelis Voulgaris, an adaptation of the novel Loimos (The Plague), by Andreas Fraggias, which is based on the experience of Yáros and Makrónisos.