Book Presentation “Beneath the Surface”, by Efrosini Camatsos

Held at the Athens Centre on Thursday, June, 9, 2011 at 7:00pm.

In 1920s in Greece, Matina mysteriously arrives at a small Greek village, possessing only the ability to bring to the surface the different desires of the villagers, especially those of Stella. Matina is courageous and free of obligations, free of having to marry, free to become her father’s lover, whereas Stella enters into a life carved out for her by generations of other women: she marries someone chosen by her father, has one child, and becomes a lady of importance in the village. The war and the German occupation changes the situation…      

Through a parallel between the dark past and a humorous present, the novel Beneath the Surface brings to light the social constraints on women and exposes the effects of blindly believing in their rigidity. It is a story about memory and its construction, about nostalgia for and repulsion at the past, about the strengths and drawbacks of a small community.

Efrosini Camatsos was born in Natchez, Mississippi, in 1975, of parents of Greek descent. After receiving her B.A. in English literature from Wesleyan University, she completed her masters in European Literature at the University of Oxford and her Ph.D. in Modern Languages at the University of Cambridge. Her interests include nineteenth and twentieth century women writers and fiction by immigrants.  She currently lives in Athens and teaches English literature at the University of Athens.  Beneath the Surface is her first novel.

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