Astroti’s death and other stories: Book review by Dimitris Kanellopoulos

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Teixela Bila writes criticism of Dimitris Kanellopoulos’s book “The Death of Astrite and Other Stories”, published by Kichli.

” Dimitris Kanellopoulos ” attempts to ” replicate the sounds, words, images and the loss of people, things and situations over time” with his collection of short stories entitled ” The Death of Astrite and Other Stories “. The poet and publisher of the “Plateau” magazine in his first prose work anxiety about the fate of memory and without disqualifying his poetic status writes about the cruelty of a world, that of the Greek province, resurrects the souls of the people of the past and brings to light their gloomy instincts but also the light of a pure simplicity that defined or restricted their actions.

As in his poems, so in his short stories, Kanellopoulos, what he manages is to draw from the forgotten stories from a time when he has gone undetected. And this is done without any nostalgia or any attempt at landscaping, but with the deep awareness that the recollection of these stories will give the voice to the heroes of the past will bring to light the virginity of a world that may have been built within the conservative social darkness of his passions and superstitions, however, he possessed an extremely charming simplicity, perhaps totally lost in our day, but identifying his identity.

In all the short stories, the central axis on which the narrative is based is not only the Greek countryside and the social dimensions of the moods that grew out, but the human factor and the bizarre struggle between good and evil. The man’s full-fledged endeavor to overcome the historical and social events of his time and the inexhaustible need to escape the darkness of the provinces’ entrenched consciences, accepting his peculiarity and mistakes.

By reading these ten short stories of Kanellopoulos, what also distinguishes it is the writer’s trust in the nature of the nature and the culture he has created. The consciousness that we carry our birthplace wherever we are, and through it, from the experiences it has given us, from the way we learned to talk to it, we can see the world in which we were found and function accordingly and judge him.

So the short stories are the way the writer returns to his home country, in the provincial life of the past and illuminates the lives of ordinary people. It focuses on their action and highlights the delicate balances of their choices. Poverty, migration, flight, survival, the way they try to overcome social exclusions and historical circumstances is the reason for the writer to bend over his heroes. To listen to their intimate thoughts.

They are people living in hard places. They grow up, fall in love, suffer, fall, lie, kill, leave or die “happy to do what they have to do on earth.” Their experiences and their choices have marked them. From the bite of Astiri to the girl who is pregnant and becomes a social and family mood in the place, the merchant “Vassantos Tension” with its tragic summits, “Dino Gazetta” or “Tragotsalo” and especially the important ” knew the letters “, which closes this valuable collection, the Kanelopoulos heroes compose the image of the morality that characterizes the space-time in which they move, as the anthropogeography that delimits the coordinates of this collection determines at the same time the society RH of exeliktikotita.

With a highly representative language course, full of idiomatic words and phrases of his place and extremely lively dialogues, Kanellopoulos’ short stories manage to introduce the contemporary reader to the atmosphere of the place and time by releasing in the text words of sound and aesthetic pleasure that make reading a flowing and enjoyable process in a fast and sweeping rhythm.

An important collection of short stories about the lost simplicity of the people of a very harsh era.

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