The Vision

Hellas Alive©: A vision realized

In the past, the ties between the Greek communities in the United States and the Greek mainland were nourished by the continuing waves of immigrants that arrived on the shores of America, who brought with them not only the language and customs of their homeland but also their experience of contemporary Greek life. The flow of immigrants has now slowed to a trickle, and with it, the renewal of Hellenism in America that their arrival once brought. The forces of assimilation that have always been a powerful feature of American life are now working to extinguish the remaining elements of Greek culture in the States. Americans are a highly mobile people, geographically and socially, and second- and third-generation Greek-Americans are no exception. They move more frequently, often finding jobs in a different city from the place where they grew up, even in a different state. They marry, as many Americans do, outside the ethnic group of their parents and grandparents. It's easy to see how second- and third-generation Greek-Americans are losing touch with the language and culture of their forebearers.

For more than 3,000 years, the Greek language has been the means that secured the cohesion of the Greek ethnos throughout the Diaspora, the living thread of communication that linked Greeks in Kalymnos and Tampa Springs , Florida , in Nisiros and Melbourne , in Ioannina and New York in a web of shared cultural values. The erosion of these bonds, particularly those of language, is a problem that concerns both Greeks and Greek-Americans.

Hellas Alive© is designed to address this challenge — to provide the means by which potential language learners in the Greek communities abroad can effectively learn Modern Greek and come to understand the cultural wealth of the Greek past and present. At the same time, Hellas Alive© seeks to use the teaching and learning of modern Greek to solidify ties of understanding and heighten communication between the younger generation in Greek communities abroad and their counterparts in Greece and also among the Omogenia communities.

That is why we have christened the project Hellas Alive© — to make the language, culture and society of Greece come alive in the mind, heart and imagination of everyone in the Greek communities in the Diaspora.

Description and Philosophy